Nick Kahler

Nick Kahler

Atlanta, GA, US


Ludic Jungle

Ludic Jungle is an architectural installation for Art on the Atlanta Beltline 2013 encompassing the idea of participatory sustainability and positing that by reclaiming and arraying over one hundred detoxified railroad ties as a forest and allee of columns, we can both glorify Atlanta's marginalized past and encourage an environment of play. Recently typified by conspicuous development, the Beltline contains underneath its surface a tragic history of death, slavery, and unapologetic industrial production that few want to uncover. The materials of the Beltline have largely been forgotten as ruins, most notably the railroad ties that line much of the path. These former trees, executed in their natural habitat and injected with toxic creosote, lay dormant for decades before their conduit became obsolete. Reclaimed from the Beltline itself as well as from a spur behind local Red Brick Brewery, this work seeks to give these ties a new life as part of a memorial to those who struggled in the Beltline’s creation.

As a field condition of columns exploring the various dialectics of nature, control, and movement, this proposal seeks to further inculcate a culture of public health in a placeless location given place by their and the community’s presence. In order to increase potential for random encounters and unexpected juxtaposition, a conceptual gradient has been applied to the delineation of columns, coalescing into two oppositional programmatic conditions: the allee and the forest, the latter subdivided into a ruined and a complete manifestation. The intent is not only to engage the public with history and sustainability, but to provide an arena for the customization of experience based on individual or collective desire.

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Status: Built
Location: Atlanta, GA, US
My Role: Designer, Fabricator, Installer