The Essence of Absence : Komodo Observatory

"The arrogance of man is to think that nature is our control", a bold and no truer quote by Carl Sagan. The world is shook by recent news stating that IUCN has declared Komodo Dragon, an endemic species of Indonesia, endangered for the very first time as a result of habitat alteration due to support tourist facilities and tourist activities that collide with Komodo’s. Komodo is predicted to be extinct by 2045 according to IUCN, if direct contact with human isn't restrained and regulated.

Government agenda is clear on prioritizing Rinca Island, a cultural heritage island in which Komodo resides, as a tourism hotspot to educate the world about the last living dragon. Architecture must be responsile to hide the presence of hundreds of people from Komodo’s habitat. Komodo Observation Centre aims to integrate 2 areas; Komodo's and tourist's, allowing tourist to see Komodo without stepping into the boundaries of their habitat. The strategy is to create a majestic tourism destination, but to make it disappear afterwards into the nature around. An architecture that hides beneath the embodiment of nature.

The observation centre will function not only as a tourist retreat, but as a research base for the conservation of Komodo and it’s habitat. Thus it will not only end tourism subdue over Komodo, but to accelerate the return of genuine Komodo habitat.

Emmerson Juliano Santosa

Universitas Pelita Harapan