Taller de Juegos
Taller de Juegos’ (Playground Workshop) was done next to the collectives ‘Las Salonnières’ (Barcelona) and ‘a77’ (Buenos Aires). The workshop was a community work for the conception and construction of a children’s playground next to the Galpón Cultural PiedraBuenArte (GCPBA) of Buenos Aires. The GCPBA is a self-managed local center made for the neighbors of the Luis Piedra Buena district. Through its cultural and artistic work, the GCPBA aims to strengthen social links within the neighborhood of thisurban environment with significant socioeconomic problems.
Following this ideas, the workshop was seen as a great opportunity. On one hand to create a new meeting point for and by the neighborhood, and on the other hand to link the GCPBA to different educational institutions. After several meetings, the project could count on the participation of all the public elementary schools in the neighborhood and of the University of Palermo in Buenos Aires.
The workshop was divided in two parts of a week each. The first part, ‘Imagining the Game’ coordinated by the collective ‘Les Salonnières’, was about working with different groups of primary school students about the concept of ‘Game’. Many recreational activities were held around the GCPBA. Some design ideas started to appear. During that week, the kid’s begun to imagine the new playground through their games, dreams and designs.
The second part, ‘Building the Game’ coordinated by the architects ‘a77′ and Pau Faus, was mainly attended by university students, primarily from architecture. The aim was here to interpret the ideas expressed during the first week of work by the kids, and try to build them. To do so, we had to meet with our ‘clients’ (the primary school children) to find out the way to formalize their demands. Their common demand was to imagine the game as a circuit where many activities were put together: climbing, sliding, screaming, swinging, jumping, etc.. We started testing some possibilities with the few material we had. Later on, we purchased (or borrowed from the neighbors) the necessary material to start building. Once the construction began, the constant presence of curious and anxious children around us, allowed us to ‘test’ continually the different parts of the playground. The whole work was completed only in five days.
After the construction was finished, we organized an opening day for the new Playground. During that day, students from the three schools of the district visited the game and checked out if any of what they had imagine was built there. Nowadays, the game is still working. We’ve been told that many changes had been done in order to adapt the playground to the local context. Hopefully those adjustments meant that we achieved our main goal, that is to create a new meeting point for the neighbors of the district.