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The Playground Project

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288 pages
Text(s) by Gabriela Burkhalter
26 x 20.5 cm
Language: English
Publisher: Les presses du réel 

Through numerous previously unpublished pictures and essays, this publication explores the history of the playground as it was shaped by education, architecture, art, and politics, and pays tribute to the most important figures, many of them forgotten today.
Until the 1980s—and in rare cases until today—playgrounds were places for social experiments, risky projects, and spectacular sculptures. Architects, urban planners, artists, parents, and children were invited to leave their comfort zone and to venture into something new. The Playground Project brings many of these exemplary, but nowadays forgotten initiatives, pioneering acts, and adventures back. Examples from Europe, the USA, Japan, and India are discussed in depth and illustrated with numerous images. This is the first comprehensive overview of this kind and addresses laymen as well as experts who want to do more than just seesaw and swing.
It brings together an introduction by Daniel Baumann, a comprehensive text on the historical development of the playground and its most important designers by the urban planner Gabriela Burkhalter, and essays by French sociologist and artist Xavier de la Salle; Indian artist Sreejata Roy; and French philosopher and curator Vincent Romagny.
This new and expanded edition, published on the occasion of “The Playground Project” exhibition at the Bundeskunsthalle in Bonn in 2018, includes a new chapter dedicated to playgrounds created in Germany, as well as new biographies dedicated to the KEKS collective and Cornelia Hahn Oberlander.
With Marjory Allen, Joseph Brown, Riccardo Dalisi, Richard Dattner, Aldo van Eyck, M. Paul Friedberg, Group Ludic (Xavier de la Salle, Simon Koszel, David Roditi), Alfred Ledermann & Alfred Trachsel, Palle Nielsen, Egon Møller-Nielsen, Isamu Noguchi, Joseph Schagerl, Mitsuru Senda, Carl Theodor Sørensen.
Published on the occasion of the eponymous exhibitions at Kunsthalle Zürich, from February 20 to May 15, 2016, and at the Bundeskunsthalle in Bonn, from July 13 to October 28, 2018.