The Big Dig Garden, by Martin Cano

The Big Dig Garden, by Martin Cano

Area: 1002 sq meters
Design Theme:  leave the garden, leave the hole, to ther other end of the world
Introduction:  The Big Dig Garden is designed by Martin Cano, one of the chief designers of Topotek one of the most progressive design corporations in Germany, and has received a number of awards such as the First Prize in competitions at Wolfsburg, Tiergarten, and Eberswalde. This design takes the earth as the model, guiding visitors back to the world the imagined in their childhood, where digging a mysterious hole in the ground, is a means though which everyone can travel to the other side of the world. The design empathizes with visitors' emotions, building a multicultural backdrop for them. It gives people the experience of transitioning from indoors to outdoors and from cities to Nature. Furthermore, it shows the combination and transition of two different cultures, broadening the traditional conception of garden.  

The Chinese are skittish about using glass as any kind of a barrier. Perhaps it has something to do with using poor quality tempered glass everywhere that shatters to pieces from temperature differentiation.

The hole "in the ground" had traffic sounds emanating from it. Before I found the hard to find tablet describing this project, I thought that the idea was meant to show some kind of an underground life, and not that it was the other side of the world.

A simple idea with clean execution is marred by all the safety add-ons. The barrier is understandable... except that few people approached this garden (there was a rest pavilion nearby that was more appealing to hundreds of Chinese). I suppose if you fell into the hole, they could use the barriers as ladders...The /two/ fire extinguishers outdoors were odd... was it because the plasma/LCD TV could possibly explode into a fireball?

4 COMMENTS ON THIS POST To “Xi’an Expo 2011: Master Hole”

  • Deniz Ç?nar

    December 14, 2011 at 5:50 am

    Hi, i am landscape architecture student and writer at a landscape magazine in Turkey. I wonder that, have these photos been taken by you? And may i use them in the magazine when i tell about projects from Xi’an Expo 2011?

    • Jeremi

      December 15, 2011 at 11:55 pm

      Hi Deniz,
      Wow! So nice of you to ask for permission! Yes, it’s fine. All of the pictures here on this site are photographs taken by myself unless otherwise noted in the captions below them. Also, please note that the project descriptions I took the time to transcribe were taken verbatim from the signage from the Expo. May I know the name of your publication?

  • JIng

    September 12, 2011 at 9:54 am

    hope there would be a wonderland down under the hole. i wonder is the tree a part of the design in the second picture?

    • Jeremi

      September 12, 2011 at 11:20 am

      come to think of it, you might be right! It seems almost that those are existing trees that the designers just made use of. Hmmm, I think they should have added a climbing rope so you could get down there 🙂 That would be quite the experience. Something like having a safety net on the bottom with a giant video screen showing the other side of the world (the screen to be installed in the aperture of the hole). That might make the garden more successful than having a TV on the outside which I forgot to mention in my post showed scenes of traffic from the other side of the world…