Refinement of Initial Ideas: Imagined Space and Creative Play

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After our tutorials with our tutors this week, we got some amazing references and refined ideas about our screen-based presentation for the AHRC showcase and the workshops coming up in March. “Imagined space” and “creative play” seem to be two aspects we would like to explore.

Build your imagined space:

Xinglin ran a project in Beijing in 2011 where she asked migrant children(age from 10 to 12) to build a small scale model of their imaginary world using different materials from daily life. The project’s outcome was an internal exhibition where the children’s models were displayed in their classroom and their parents were invited to visit.

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A group of boys built a space shuttle and apron in their imagined space.

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A girl viewing her classmate’s work in the exhibition.

The House of Cards revisited:

The House of Cards by Charles Eames (50s) is a strong inspiration for our next step. Below are some examples of re-interpretation and use of the famous system/design such as community project where the public is invited to personalize the card, assemble and reassemble them, encouraging creativity and collaboration.

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Eames’ original House of Cards. Link.

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Collaboration between children and adult. Essential Eames: A Herman Miller Exhibition. Link.

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Giant personalised House of Cards. Project link.

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The original concept turned into an architectural space! Project link.

 The work of Peter Nencini (thanks Teal!):

We looked at some of Peter Nencini ‘s work, two projects were very inspiring for our research: Hand Werk Pound Shop (2010) which features a beautifully crafted “tool kit” and the project Recherches Concrètes which involved Teal Triggs and LCC MRes Information Environments students in 2010 to think about physical and “second life” space. Key elements for us of both projects:

  • Abstract play
  • Ambiguous accessories
  • Sequential elements
  • Abstract grids
  • Modular elements

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Hand Werk Pound Shop. Images via Peter Nencini’s blog.

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Recherches Concrètes. Images via Peter Nencini’s blog.

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Recherches Concrètes. Images via Peter Nencini’s blog.

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Recherches Concrètes. Images via Peter Nencini’s blog.

The Institute of Play:

The Institute pioneers new models of learning and engagement and they kindly shared their methodology of their practice about their Quest School’s project online. It is really inspiring for our research and design as they are exploring game-liked connected learning methods.

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The institute brings about multiple interesting perspectives about games as authoring tools, content, simulation, context, point of view, text and reflection, which are also worth looking into.

From our conversation, the following points were raised:

  • Relationship between our 5mins screen-based presentation, workshop and final intervention. For example, consider our 5 minutes screen-based presentation as a “trailer” for our workshop and intervention, to signal ideas we will explore in both workshop and intervention.
  • Think about a visual identity for the project that would be used in the screen-base presentation, workshop and final outcome.
  • The different project members taking part in the project (academic/industry experts) don’t have/use the same language to talk and understand the topic.
  • One hour workshop is short! What do we want to get out from it?
  • For our workshop: to position play in a very informative way.
  • Look back to the project’s goals and make sure we explore some of them:
  1. To develop innovative approaches to children’s free play where they can blend traditional and digital forms of play. To adapt an approach of creative and open-ended gaming in which players use their imaginations to add to videogame content.

  2. To inform the development of videogames that enable children to connect to other players (in hospitals, at home, at school).

  3. To develop playful videogames that inform children of what to expect from their time in hospitals, for example helping children to become familiar with hospital, understanding their treatments, expressing emotions and recognising their interests in gore and dying (which can be overlooked in adult led narratives).

  • Imagined space as a common space for people to meet/connect/discuss = as a common ground.
  • Can you construct your own imagined space? Collaborative aspect, building together.
  • Play/experience/connection
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