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The Mirrored Lookout: An Art Installation in Scotland

An Art Installation in the Trossachs

I recently spent some time near Loch Voil, a beautiful slither of pearly freshwater that lies nestled in the Trossachs. Hardly a place that attracts hordes of visitors, which makes the art installation at the embankment near the Monachyle Mhor Hotel all the more interesting.

Situated on a small peninsula of land that separates Loch Voil and Loch Doine, it offers spectacular views in all directions. The looming hills above and the graceful trees – which are a dark amber and rich green this time of year – are reflected outwards by the seemingly omnipresent mirrors. As a result, the little cube nearly disappears into the landscape, as it projects its surroundings effortlessly back into itself.

And yet, even in the presence of such an obscure mirrored cube, there are two more mirrors to admire: the two Lochs that lie peacefully beside one another. The contrast between the reflection and the views are often blurred, creating a dichotomous visual experience that is enhanced by the unpredictability of the Scottish weather. Darkening clouds and shimmering sunlight occupy the same visual space, betraying the harmonious interplay between reflection and reality.

In the distance, you can perhaps – with a little imagination – see the twinkling of the lights at Craigruie and Balquhidder, the two hamlets that lie respectively in the middle and at the very opposite end of Loch Voil.

The Story of The Mirrored Lookout

The inside of the mirrored lookout is nothing special. A  place to sit and look out is all you need. In fact, the art installation offers two of them, each facing the opposite way. As the last embers of the evening sun disappear over the outstretched valley, you may even notice a few of the houses that hug the rugged hillside.

The art installation was designed by Angus Ritchie and Daniel Tyler in 2014 and was executed by hand in less than two months. However, as one of the more unobtrusive sights to see (partly due to its discrete nature) it is definitely worth a visit. For a quick time-lapse of the build process, see the video below:

How to get there:

The installation is a fifteen minute walk from the car park of Monachyle Mhor Hotel, which welcomes walkers. The best way to get there is by car, as public transport is non-existent in this rural location.

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