| Centrip Editorial Board
Site of Reversible Destiny - Yoro Park: A popular tourist attraction on or offline
About an hour's drive from Nagoya is a fun art theme park called the Site of Reversible Destiny - Yoro Park. The avant-garde art buildings and uneven roads make it feel like stepping into an upside-down world that tests your sense of balance.
Site of Reversible Destiny - Yoro Park: An avant-garde art park conceived over 30 years ago
The park is a 30-year project by renowned Japanese artist Shusaku Arakawa and American poet Madeline Gins. The works of art here can be appreciated with the eyes and felt with the body.
Entering the park is like walking through the looking glass. The roads are winding, the floors of the buildings are slanted, and mysterious mazes await. Shuusaku Arakawa believed that people take safety for granted and gradually let their physical functions deteriorate, so he designed a work that subverts balance in the hope of awakening the sleeping senses of those who experience it.
The Site of Reversible Destiny was built in 1997, but the work is so avant-garde that it doesn't look like it was designed 20 years ago. Recently, the place has become a popular Instagram spot, riding on the wave of internet attractions. I wonder if Mr. Arakawa could have envisioned this situation when designing the park.
Site of Reversible Destiny
Walking on air! Reversible Destiny Office - Yoro
The Memorial Hall is the only fully indoor building in the area. It is difficult to define the shape of the building, and the 24 colors used on the façade are not overwhelming.
As you enter the museum, you are greeted by a colorful maze and the illusion that you are taller now than when you first entered the museum. Grab your friends and take some pictures of the contrast between the giants and the dwarfs.
Each door opens to reveal a different landscape and even the curators often open the doors and don't know where they are.
Huh!? Why are people walking on the ceiling? If you want to take pictures of people, make use of the symmetrical design of the museum, stand on the maze wall, and flip the picture 180 degrees to become an expert walker!
The toilets in the museum are a continuation of the art concept, boldly designed as a brightly colored maze. They resemble the exhibition space outside a little too much!
Outside the museum is a rock art piece called the Insect Mountain Range, with a water fountain at the top that flows with clean water. The people climbing up the mountain are like insects struggling to find water.
Is that furniture stuck in the wall? Critical Resemblance House
The Critical Resemblance House looks just as impressive as it does when the map of Gifu Prefecture is used as the ceiling! The whole building is supported by a number of skewed walls, each gap in the wall is an entrance to the maze, and your heart will race as you feel like you are choosing your fate.
In addition to finding your way through the narrow maze, from time to time you will see sofas, desks, workstations, and more stuck in the walls; and when you look up, the same furniture is hanging upside down, even under the floor! When you see furniture in such strange positions, you'll ask yourself "Where am I?"
The whole Critical Resemblance House is like a mirror, where you can look up and down and find the reflection of objects, but not people. The creator, Shusaku Arakawa, wanted to give the experience a sense of uncertainty and disorientation through this expression.
It is difficult to convey in words, but below is a video of my actual adventure, please check it out!
In front of the Critical Resemblance House, there is a large cave. Because of the sloping terrain, you can take a picture of yourself jumping up in front of it as if you were going to jump into it. But actually do it, you might not be able to get out!
Beyond Gravity! Exactitude Ridge
The sloping ramp in front of the building is covered with an interwoven map with the names of the country's major roads in various languages. It feels like you can travel around the world in just a few steps.
Using the sloping ramp, you can take miraculous photos! Stand straight with your feet on the ground and turn the camera, for a freeze-framed photo the moment right before you are about to fall down.
It is the highest point for looking down at the whole park. If you look around, you can see small and large red mounds scattered throughout the park. If you put them all together, you will discover that they are the islands of Japan.
On the other side of the slope, there is a large basin called The Eliptical Field, which has more ups and downs and requires your whole body to balance.
A Déjà vu Maze. Destiny House
With its maze, the tilted walls, and the crooked sofa, Destiny House is like a replica of the Critical Resemblance House introduced earlier. In old age, we see similar objects appearing, again and again, the artist's intention was to confuse visitors and make them rethink their position in this world.
Looking down, you see gas stoves buried under the floor of the maze. When you find everyday household items outdoors, you cannot help but ask, "Why is it here?"
It's like a magic house that appears in fairy tales.
Challenging the Maximum Slope. Kinesthetic Path
This slope is the largest in the park, and even with sports shoes on your feet will often slip.
The slope was scattered with sofas and flow tables, and it is not easy to stand up straight on crooked sofas to take pictures (who'd have thought!). It is also possible to create a floating photo that looks like you are in a gravity-free world.
The Kinesthetic Path is the highest point at the Site of Reversible Destiny, where you can see the Nobi Plain, the fifth-largest plain in Japan, and all of the Site of Reversible Destiny.
Food Market: Rakuichi Rakuza
You can't eat at the Site of Reversible Destiny, only water is permitted. However, there the food market, Rakuichi Rakuza, is nearby. If you are tired, come here to replenish your strength. (There is no limit to the number of times you can re-enter on the same day)
The Rakichi Rakuza building is designed as a large white tent, creating the atmosphere of a picnic in nature. You can order local cuisine and beer from Gifu, and enjoy your meal surrounded by the beautiful scenery of the fields.
Just an hour away from Nagoya, there is an incredible art park called the Site of Reversible Destiny. It's perfect for pictures, experiencing an upside-down world, admiring art, or bringing your kids to play.
After experiencing the Site of Reversible Destiny, you can also visit other areas of the park, such as seeing the autumn leaves, Yoro Falls, and Kodomo-no-Kuni children's park, for a full day of fun!
© 1997 Estate of Madeline Gins. Reproduced with permission of the Estate of Madeline Gins.