What kind of future possibilities can be imagined for the imminent abandoned city in the desert Maria Elena? The world's last private town based on nitrate mining.
Founded in 1926 by the Guggenheim family as a mining town, its plan resemble the ideal layouts of sixteenth and seventeenth-century cities like Vincenzo Scamozzi's Palmanova or Sabastian La Prestre de Vauban's Neuf-Brisach.
Imagining a possible future for Maria Elena, the fictional project is based on reconsidering and exacerbating the city as a collection of different desert landscapes, like a movie set.
The project defines a border, materialized in a wall, that separates an ideal interior from the desert reality anthropized by the mining exploitation. Also the interior is divided into quadrants that contain a preserved mosaic of ideal deserts and the ideal city. Each quadrant represents an ideal state.
The wall that delimits the project reflects the different realities exacerbating them, towards the interior an unalloyed ideal, towards the outside the anthropized reality.