Madrid. Plaza Mayor turns into an urban park for its 400th anniversary

The SpY art collective conceived a green temporary installation to amaze locals and tourists.

SpY, Plaza Mayor, Madrid, 2017

Plaza Mayor in Madrid turns 400. Located in the historical and touristic centre of the Spanish capital, the iconic square was demanded by king Philip II at the end of the 15th century and designed by architect Juan Gómez de Mora. It is a regular cut of 129 x 94 m on the Madrid’s chaotic and urban fabric. The square is defined by three storeys residential buildings, featuring 237 balconies.

To celebrate its birthdate, Madrid-based at collective SpY turned the square into an urban park for four days. Facing the rectangular void, the circular field is 70 meters in diameter. It creates a surprising and disorienting effect. According to the artists: “The revitalization of this public space pretends to involve pedestrians with their own city. This type of artistic work turns the table making the citizens turn into the artists and vice-versa; it also passes the floor to surprise, to encounter and invites to reflection. In other words, it openly shares the benefit of art with the whole public.”

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