Hwanho Park in Pohang, South Korea, has a walkable rollercoaster called “SpaceWalk.” The truth is that we all need to stretch our legs more. However, walking can become monotonous at times. We do, however, have options these days. We can act like we’re on an epic journey to Mordor. We’ll be able to capture Pokémon. Walking can also become a thrill ride for some lucky people in South Korea. German artists Heike Mutter and Ulrich Genth created a winding, wild roller coaster structure that you can walk through.
According to the SpaceWalk’s official website, “this 333-metre-long, gleaming silver track looks like a rollercoaster from a distance.” Closer inspection reveals it to be a winding stair curving through space in spectacular undulations.” According to DesignTAXI, the structure is “South Korea’s largest contemporary public artwork.” And, to be honest, we don’t doubt it because we can’t think of one that goes any higher. The builders of SpaceWalk reportedly employed “galvanized and stainless steels on a cement substrate and embedded rows of LED lights,” according to Colossal. The sloping features are created by the steel, and the light causes it to shine brightly when the sun goes down, like some fantastical creature.
“At night, in particular, the brightly-illuminated walkway appears like a sigil drawn in the sky, appearing to represent different things depending on where one is standing. Thus, the sculpture also references local mythology and a tradition of sky-gazing and also makes playful use of relativity.”Mutter and Genth
We can envision SpaceWalk is one of those creations that, if seen up close, would take your breath away. It looks like something out of a science fiction novel. A relic from a world other than our own. And, of course, we have no idea what it would be like to climb those steps into the sky. You can, however, climb them. There are two walkways in the sculpture. One with a gentler slope and a view of Yeongil Bay. And a second walkway with a slightly steeper climb through a helix. From afar, this helix appears to form a perfect circle. Both walkways join together to create a central loop that is impassable.
“The title ‘SpaceWalk’ is taken from the terminology of outer space missions,” the artists explain further. It refers to the act of exiting a spacecraft in the weightlessness of outer space. More literally, ‘SpaceWalk’ can be translated as “a walk through space.”
Overall, this walkable rollercoaster staircase perfectly captures a mysterious air. It appears to be from another world and creates a kind of liminal space. Not quite a cursed item, but certainly an arcane one, otherworldly in the best possible way. We cannot guarantee that if you board, you will not end up in another realm.
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