The Urban Guide for Alternate Use


Some other very similar investigations going on from Scott Burnham for the Exchange Radical Moments! Festival. Burnham is putting together a manual for urban hacking. It’s very much in tune with what I was talking about in a previous post about giving communities the tools and opportunity to try to re-imagine their surroundings. In this case Burnham’s key word is resourcefulness . From the Exchange Radical Moments Festival catalogue:

Resourcefulness has become one of the most important skills for people to develop today. What resources do you see being treated as waste in your city that could be used to benefit others?

The Urban Guide for Alternate Use is a catalogue of city-specific opportunities for resourcefulness within existing urban environments, compiled simply by asking the city’s residents to devise alternate uses for things already present in the city. It is a guide that acts as a catalyst for a new form of resourcefulness in the city, and as a communicative vehicle for exchange among residents.

For the festival Exchange Radical Moments, a guide will be created for one of the participating cities, filled with the ideas submitted by the city’s residents, as gestures of donation to their fellow citizens. The city guide will be written by the imagination and resourceful thinking of its residents, and can serve as an alternate guide to the city. Together the different submissions will form a powerful collection of insights into how people mentally and physically play with the urban landscape as a conglomeration of readymade objects ripe for intervention.

Took the words right out of my mouth. This alternative urban guide is so close to what this thesis project could become, that I’m definitely going to get on board when call for submissions arrives. In the meantime I aim to set up some workshops of my own.

Beautiful Steps #2


I just came across this amazing staircase by swiss artists Sabina Lang and Daniel Baumann. The construction itself is enough to make my tummy spin. At first look, I thought this was a functioning staircase, and was amazed it could have gotten past all the safety regulations (I know all about the domestic side of this from looking to install a staircase in my flat in London). However, the fact that Lang and Baumann are called artists, rather than architects or designers, gives the game away. This is art, not design, and thus does not to conform.

But it’s not just this. After the read more you’ll see what happens when the sun shines through the staircase.

Play Suit





Create interventions that spark incidental play in the urban realm; interventions will are not separate elements, but that are built into existing furniture and architectural elements in the city in order to prompt playful behaviour.

Play Back

71% of adults in Britain today used to play on the streets when they were young. Now only 21% of children do so. Are we designing children and play out of the public realm?

Hot Play

Play+Risk=Hot Play
Through playful exploration, we put ourselves at more risk from our environment, and learn more about ourselves and our surroundings.