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Come design, play and then take a seat

By Maria Gregoriou

If you are interested in design, in making the outside world of cities look and feel more inviting, and in working together with others to get the creative juices flowing and reaching the end of a project with pride, then the interactive design workshop entitled SITME_PLAYME set to run on Tuesday is what you have been looking for to do after the Christmas rush.

The workshop is being organised by the Urban Gorillas – a local NGO that aims in undertaking projects, events and activities that enrich community building and creative collaboration – and it is part of the Structure project, which re-uses material to build structures.

The workshop, which will be held at the Makerspace/ parking lot next to the Home for Cooperation, opposite Ledra Palace in Nicosia, will involve the creation of a public seating object that will be installed in a public space in the city, where its use will be observed over time.

SITME_PLAYME will give you the chance to collaboratively design and build an object for public use. All present will firstly be introduced to the project, then you can introduce yourself to the group and highlight your particular skills, next you will share available material and talk about other projects you have been involved in or that you may know of, and then discuss assembly techniques. After you are all acquainted you will share ideas and have a brainstorm session, sketch and design, come to a decision on which idea will be followed through, agree on the tools needed for the construction works and then create a work plan.

There is no pre-conceived design or pre-determined result ahead of the workshop. The only criteria for the object’s function once it is completed is that it offer a place to sit, that it is environmentally friendly and therefore greens the space it is set in, and that it invites play and interaction though sound.

The workshop will be followed by construction work on January 16 and 17 from 10am until 4pm.

Urban Gorillas will bring to the Makerspace a collection of reclaimed materials for participant doers to use. If you would like to also bring along recycled or reclaimed materials, or any other objects you think will be useful, then pack them up ready for your journey to the on-site project.

The object will remain at the Makerspace until the end of the project’s timeframe and will be observed as to how it is used, reacted to and even changed, in keeping with the spirit of the overall project. Later Urban Gorillas will move the object and install it in another public space in the city for its continued use by the public. It will be observed over time to see how people will react to it, how much it will be used, and if it will be cared for, abused, changed or even moved. The location could be one where a city webcam already exists, adding to the visibility of the object to the public and adding the voyeur element to the public installation. The object may move to other locations in the city and monitored regularly to see how people interact with it.

The Structure project is organised by ARTos Foundation and Hack66 in collaboration with Lefkosia Hackerspace and Home for Cooperation, and with the support of the Cultural Services of the Ministry of Education and Culture.

SITME_PLAYME provides a vehicle through which to explore public space, and its usage, and to gain further insight on how urban dwellers in our island’s capital respond to small-scale installations in their city.

An interactive design workshop to create a public seating object. December 29. Makerspace / parking lot next to Home for Cooperation, Nicosia. 10am-12pm. Tel: 22-445455

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