26 November 2018

co+labo radović  Tuesday@co+labo 1:  Alice Covatta: Tokyo Playground-urbanism of play   
Tuesdays are the most intensive of co+labo days, with activities ranging from regular laboratory meetings, research presentations and discussions to frequent guest research seminars and lectures. With two guest talks, Tuesday 27 November 2018 was arguably one of the richest. Alice Covatta, who first joined co+labo as an exchange PhD student from the University of Udine, Italy in 2014, continued as a Post Doctoral Fellow in 2016 and, finally, is with us as a Japan Foundation Research Fellow since 2017, presented her work on cities and play with a lecture "Tokyo Playground: the urbanism of play in everyday human experience".
Alice explains how "play moves between different realms and definitions, reality and unreality, space and time, collective and individual, freedom and rules. When translated into our cityscape it can be a powerful tool able to transform anonymous urban setting into "extraordinary" space where the activities, movements and uses are carried on by the player because he/she likes doing it, freely accepting the play limitation.
Playgrounds spread in our urban environment are the setting for playful activities such as fun, relaxation, exercise or escape becoming a qualitative manifestation for a healthy human experience. Inside the playground border, the rules of the game hold, but at the same time the free nature of play when is affected by the non-optimal urban/social conditions of the context can easily assume a fragile status and disappear. Therefore, both the protection and the promotion of playful spaces need careful attention, especially in the contemporary urban settlement. Hence, the aim of the lecture is firstly to add nuance to the understanding of urban design linked to playful activities in order to improve health conditions especially in children and teenagers. Secondly, it aims to give practical examples through a case study analysis of how urban planning and urban design can affect positively play creating new opportunities." (a poster was designed by Alice Covatta)

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