Building Our Future _ Project

I have quite recently been invited to do a talk in a Primary school speaking about the values of art / community art projects! After finishing my presentation and having felt a really positive vibe coming from the students, i went to the Teacher’s office to talk to them about a potential project in collaboration with the kids. I discussed some key words and topics with the head teacher of the primary school and been told that one of the topics concluded in the yearly program was ”my city”.

I have been researching some interesting architecture around the world for a few days now, like for example the ‘ the Basket building in Ohio, Us,Erwin Wurm: House Attack, Viena, Austria etc.

The inspiration of the design for most of the buildings were quite obvious but some of them like for example the dancing buildings in Praga( fig.3.) bellow were a bit more interesting since there were a larger platform of possible ‘inspirations’ to guess.

I prepared a small presentation for the classes, were i presented some of these buildings.
Firstly i asked them if they knew what the word Architect means and what is his job !
Referring to the dancing buildings above, I asked them what they saw. Interestingly enough the first time that i asked them the question, a shy student raised his hand and said..’ i see a building – is it real ?’ i laughed telling him that yes of course 🙂 it actually reminds me of an octabus! all of a sudden the kids got excited! one after the other started rising their hands shouting : ‘i see an ice cream’ ! i ‘see an octabus leaning on an ice cream !’i see a birds nest on top of the ice cream !!’ i see a rocket  etc.
The children got more and more excited as i showed them the rest of the pictures.
Will Attach POWER POINT PRESENTATION HERE (my computer broke – actually i spilled a class of water on it)

A small parenthesis here: 
Was reading a little bit about the theory of Gestalt( Unfied whole)Gestalt refers to theories related to visual perception, which were developed around the 20s by German Psychologists, to describe how one can organize visual elements into groups or ‘wholes when some principle are applied.These principles might be :continuation, proximity,closure, Similarity etc.

Key point here is Similarity( objects might look similar to something – ex dancing buildings – some children saw a rocket, ice cream, no one saw the dancers btw)
a really strong and popular example of  the term is the image below( the Rubi Goblet):

”The Rubin Goblet illustrates a basic concept from Gestalt psychology: the figure-ground distinction. When a gestalt is formed (perceived) it becomes a figure (a thing apart, an entity or object). A figure is always backed up by a surrounding ground. With Rubin’s goblet, the goblet and faces take turns being figure and ground. When you see the goblet, the faces disappear into a black background. When you see the faces, the goblet disappears into a white background. A pattern cannot be seen as figure and ground at the same time. Yet the pattern in the external world—the stimulus—does not change. Only the perception of it changes. To the gestalt psychologists, this proved that stimulus/response theories were inadequate to account for perception, and that seemed to them like vindication of their own perspective.” — 

After completing the presentation i asked them if they wanted if they wanted to adopt the role of young architects with me and collaborate in projects ! i heard a 40 yeeeeeesses 🙂 with a huge smile on my face and a dived them into groups of three or four and gave them a piece of paper each group asking them to draw their buildings.
The results were amazing !!
After gathering all the images, I have scanned them, and placed each drawing in illustrator were i started editing the drawings adding some fragments and improving some sections.I will be posting some of the results in the followings posts.
Our goal is ! after completing the drawings, to draw the outlines on a huge wall in their school and then let the children draw them. My initial idea was to create some 2d large scale – Wooden sculptures out of the results and then place them around the city but due to the office work and the limited time we have available we concluded to keep the project inside the borders of the school for now).




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