Head to the
Tate Modern in Southwark
and you could find yourself lost in a dizzying maze of 15 interlocking wooden
stairways. The gravity-defying stairs, located on the outside lawn, might lead
to nowhere, but the impressive structure – a landmark project of the London Design Festival 2013 –
is an architectural and engineering feat that is still worth climbing.
interactive installation Endless Stair takes
its inspiration from a drawing by Dutch graphic artist MC Escher. With a total
length of 436m – four and a half times the height of Big Ben – the staircase is
made from American tulipwood. Known for its excellent structural properties and
impressive weight-to-strength ratio, the wood allows the seemingly free-standing
installation to safely accommodate up to 93 people at a time.
and down the 187 steps (don't worry, there is a banister to hold); some lead to
a dead end, others will take you on a confusing detour, while the tallest ones
lead you so high you can see the city's skyline across the River Thames all the
way to St Paul's Cathedral.
Endless Stair is open from Monday to Sunday, 9
am to dusk, until 10 October.
Malika Dalamal is
the London Localite for BBC Travel