The Journal of Public Space 2023-03-29T03:09:33+02:00 Dr Luisa Bravo Open Journal Systems <p><strong>WE PRODUCE PUBLIC KNOWLEDGE ON PUBLIC SPACE.<br /></strong></p> <p> </p> <p>The Journal of Public Space (<strong>ISSN 2206-9658)</strong> is a research project developed by <strong><a title="City Space Architecture" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">City Space Architecture</a></strong>, a non-profit organization based in Italy, in partnership with <strong><a title="UN HABITAT" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">UN-Habitat</a></strong>, the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, based in Kenya.<br />The Journal of Public Space is the first, international, interdisciplinary, academic, open access journal entirely dedicated to public space. It speaks different languages and is open to embrace diversity, inconvenient dialogues and untold stories, from cross-disciplinary fields and all countries, especially from those that usually do not have voice, overcoming the Western-oriented approach that is leading the current discourse.<br />As a proper public space, The Journal of Public Space is free, accessible and inclusive, both for authors and readers, providing a platform for emerging and consolidated researchers, including also professionals, artists and community leaders; it is intended to foster research, showcase best practices and inform discussion about the more and more important issues related to public spaces in our changing and evolving societies.</p> <p>Read more about the <strong><a title="JPS Editorial Team" href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Editorial Team</a> </strong>and about our <a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><strong>double blind peer review process</strong></a>.<strong><br /></strong></p> <p> </p> <p><strong>FOR AUTHORS: check if your article is currently under peer review </strong>&gt;&gt;&gt; open <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">this page</a></span>.</p> <p> </p> Creative Practices in the Public Realm 2023-03-29T03:09:33+02:00 Luisa Bravo Maggie McCormick Fiona Hillary <p>This ‘Art and Activism in Public Space’ special issue of The Journal of Public Space presents a spectrum of practices and theoretical reflections on creative practices in public space, across a diverse range of public environments including in the Sudan, China, Australia, UK, Mexico, Cuba, Italy and Colombia. Through articles and portfolios, the reader is drawn into both familiar and unfamiliar scenarios.<br />Articles and portfolios in Art and Activism in Public Space issues are not asked to respond to a specific theme. The intention of this publication is to reflect on what emerges at the intersection of art-based research, creative practice, theoretical frameworks around contemporary public practice, and the changing nature of public space.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2023 Luisa Bravo; Maggie McCormick, Fiona Hillary Safety in Numbers 2022-08-17T12:00:36+02:00 Jacek Ludwig Scarso Kirsten Jeske Thompson <p>As we navigate the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic and face ever more complex challenges to our experience of the public sphere, the phrase ‘safety in numbers’ entails increasingly contradictory connotations. What is the role of large public space gatherings in rebuilding confidence in our use of public space and what creative and logistical strategies may be used to this end? This article represents the first in a series of studies, exploring the work of internationally acclaimed public art production company, Artichoke. A “reverse-engineering” focus is applied here, as we revisit three seminal projects across Artichoke’s fifteen-year body of work: respectively, The Sultan’s Elephant (2006), Lumiere (2009-ongoing) and Processions (2018). While there is no “standard” Artichoke work, these projects share important commonalities in relation to the potential of ephemeral public art events to adapt and disrupt our perception of public spaces. Each project achieved considerable impact, with audience numbers reaching hundreds of thousands and even millions through media dissemination: in doing so, Artichoke’s work has not only pioneered new forms of large-scale spectacular and participatory events, but also played a significant role in shaping policies for public art commissioning and realisation. Drawing on archival data, as much as on a range of anecdotal experiences provided by audience testimonials and interviews with Helen Marriage, Artichoke’s Artistic Director and CEO, the article aims to evaluate learnings and strategies that have allowed this company’s approach to be resilient and innovative in relation to public engagement. The projects explored here were mostly realised long before our cities were shaped by the unprecedented restrictions caused by the pandemic; yet, they nonetheless all had to deal with substantial logistical and creative challenges, deriving from complex safety measures and an ever-changing urban and cultural landscape. Looking back is here intended as a means to think ahead, as we consider key traits in Artichoke’s work: in particular, its continued adaptability, its fluid negotiation between artist-led expertise and participation, and its unique aesthetic in temporarily disrupting our relationship with the ‘soft city’.</p> <p> </p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Jacek Ludwig Scarso, , Kirsten Jeske Thompson Creating a Network of Places with Participatory Actions across Cities and Cultures 2022-08-17T12:01:56+02:00 Leandro Madrazo Tadeja Zupančič Burak Pak Maria Irene Aparício <p>The aim of the A-Place project is to address the problem of placelessness in our multicultural, and interconnected societies from a multidisciplinary and participatory perspective. Artists and creators, educators and students of art and architecture, and cultural agents collaborate with communities in the design and implementation of placemaking activities with the purpose of reinforcing the bonds between people and the places they live in. Activities in locations in several European cities, as well as in digital spaces, have contributed to the creation of a network of places ‒both tangible and intangible ‒ that exploit the multiple dimensions of public space as a stage for leisure, entertainment and education. A sequence of planning, performing, reflecting and evaluating has been applied to the activities carried out in the first year of this four-year project. The outcomes of this first cycle will help to expand the network of places in the coming years of the project. A key issue for the further development of the project is the evaluation of the impact of placemaking activities on the communities.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Leandro Madrazo, Tadeja Zupančič, Burak Pak, Petra Pferdmenges, Maria Irene Aparício Public Space, Public Art, and The Revolution 2022-08-17T12:03:00+02:00 Ibrahim Zakaria Bahreldin <p>Since the Arab spring in 2011, public space and public art have been progressively central to urban planning and design literature. The recent social movements and reform discourse in the Sudanese cities exhibit that public space and public art have come to the fore in the civil uprising of December 2018 and its associated sit-in space. While many studies have examined public spaces in Khartoum, only a few have looked at them from the perspective of activism and public art. Yet, the post-2018 uprising has rendered these topics critical and compelling to researchers. This research reflects upon the transformation and events in the Khartoum sit-in space during the December uprising. Our article aims to document and analyse the public art and graffiti presented in the sit-in space in Khartoum. This research tries to answer two main questions: What role does public art and graffiti play in the revolution? Moreover, how does this role influence the quality of public space in general and the sit-in space in particular? The methodology used in this article includes direct observation, interviews, and follow-up of written and photographic material from the sit-in space and online and written resources. The results exhibited in this article show that public art and graffiti played five significant roles in the sit-in space. Public art also transformed the sit-in space aesthetics and the conception of public art and how it is produced and consumed.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Ibrahim Zakaria Bahreldin Selflessness is the Highest Achievement 2022-08-17T12:03:38+02:00 Andrea Marsili <p>Jenny Holzer’s art revolves around outspoken texts that inhabit posters and signs, namelessly disseminated through the city. The ungendered authority voice in her first written pieces, Truisms (1977-1987) and Inflammatory Essays (1978-1982), allowed her to avoid any associations with femininity as traditionally understood, fuelling passers-by's critical reflection.</p> <p>Later in her career, in parallel with her efforts to establish herself on a phallocentric art scene, Holzer’s production found placement within more institutionalised museum contexts. Nonetheless, anonymity still remains a constant in Holzer’s work and is thus not secondary to her outputs. Yet, most of the time, this was partially overlooked by scholars in favour of different conceptualisations of her work. Hence, this article aims to bridge this gap in the literature by analysing how Holzer adopted voices different from hers in the early stages of her career. The goal is to understand the rhetorical strategies she employed to find a place in a male-dominated art world and cityscape. By inquiring the self-fashioning of an unnamed identity, it will be remarked how the notion of persona is constantly evolving through time and space. It will be further argued that she appropriated authoritative voices far from her own, adapting them to address the public by proposing gestures of activism on topical issues of undoubtful relevance, directly intervening in the public space.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Andrea Marsili Activism, Participation and Art during the Pandemic: the Project Back to the Future of Public Space 2022-08-17T12:23:49+02:00 Cecilia De Marinis Dorotea Ottaviani <p>2020 has challenged our ways of living and making sense of the world, driving us to rethinking our daily life in both the private and public spheres. Public space has especially been questioned; our understanding of it and the way we use it have been completely revolutionised, opening up new interpretations and evaluations.<br>At the end of 2020 Rhizoma Design and Research Lab launched a Call for Postcards, inviting architects, designers, artists, and activists to reflect upon the paradigm shift happening in our cities, observing and documenting the changing everyday praxis of inhabiting public space as well as envisioning its future, capturing those reflections and ideas in a Postcard.<br>In a time when access to public space was restricted and art in public was paused, the call explored the role of a virtual space for the active creation, sharing, and fruition of public artworks.&nbsp; <br>The call led to a virtual and physical exhibition titled <em><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Back to the Future of Public Space: Postcards from 2020</a> </em>which has become an observatory of, perspectives, memories, and visions that are currently shaping public space, transforming the individual contributions in a collective narrative.&nbsp;</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Cecilia De Marinis, Dorotea Ottaviani Reinhabiting in Huaniao Island 2022-08-17T12:08:06+02:00 Ye (Sherry) Liu <p>This paper argues that the loss of cultural memories is an essential issue that challenges the social transformation in Chinese rural regeneration and proposes 'reinhabiting the place' as a potential to empower the traditional community and contribute to renewing cultural connections. Based on my experience of the residency period and other artists' practice on the Huaniao Island, this portfolio explores 'culture aphasia' in the rural revitalization of Huaniao island. It investigates the 2nd Huaniao Island International Public Art Festival's social engagement practice and explores how creative strategies operate to reinhabit the place and re-establish cultural connections. The text explores how artists work proactively with residents and visitors, reconstruct the cultural memories, and renew affective engagement of the community.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Ye Liu Finding Children of Compost Symbionts 2022-08-17T12:09:00+02:00 Clara Chan <p>This project explores the use of simple craft techniques as resistance, and is a response to Haraway's call for "collaborative and divergent story-making practice" in her Camille Stories: Children of Compost (2016). I use compost as a figuration that articulates life in the damaged world. Living is composting. This project seeks to inspire curious and open thinking, and to build a "dialogical bridge between knowledge systems” (Rose, 2020). Through the agency of my Children of Compost Symbionts (an organism living in symbiosis with another), this project aims to engage the public in constructive public discourse in order to find hope, care and empathy in the broken world. The symbionts appropriate traditional handcrafted toys, like dolls and bears, and work in the way that psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott called "transitional objects" (Levy, 2021) work for children: they carry our anxieties, rage, love, and most secret thoughts, and live the life on our behalf. These whimsical symbionts inspire the public to tell their own stories of remediation and repair, encourage the public to create new perspectives and approaches, and engage with a multiplicity of otherness ethically.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Clara Chan Evocations: Honouring The Memory of Women Artists 2022-08-17T12:50:49+02:00 Cynthia Granados Posada <p>The life and work of women artists has been, more often than not, neglected and excluded from history. There are artists, groups, authors and institutions around the world who have made and continue to make efforts to shed light on excluded artists by showing their work in exhibitions, compilations, websites or social media accounts. The ongoing project <em>Evocations</em> aims to honour some of those forgotten artists through the creation of artwork inspired by them. Until now, this project has consisted of four participatory public performance art pieces and a collective exhibition honouring eleven women artists who have not been properly recognised for their achievements. By undertaking these participatory performances in public space locations the art, ideas and lives of these women are drawn into the daily life of contemporary Mexico.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Cynthia Granados Posada ACT_VISION 2022-08-17T12:19:19+02:00 Emma Anna <p>This paper takes the form of personal memoir as a reflection on art in the public domain and a means by which to re-tell the conceptual development and evolution of <em>IMAG_NE</em>, a concrete poem and public sculpture. The concept was first developed for my Masters of Arts (Art in Public Space) at RMIT University. Initially an aid to assist my own personal creative evolution, the artwork has now toured as an ephemeral installation to communities across Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the United States of America and has been widely used as a tool to promote community initiatives and collective visioning. Joseph Beuys’s theories of a “social sculpture” are drawn upon as a conceptual framework to underpin <em>IMAG_NE</em> and its agenda to promote individual and societal change. The power of the human imagination is evoked in an ongoing conference with a broad range of sites, communities and individuals. The impact of <em>IMAG_NE</em> is demonstrated through key examples including its appearance at numerous large public sculpture festivals and significant cultural sites. Recent developments surrounding the work’s presence in the Central Coast community of New South Wales, Australia, provides further evidence of the work’s importance and impact, and motivation for the continuation of the project into the post-Covid 19 pandemic era.</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Emma Anna Fieldwork, A Trilogy 2022-08-17T12:20:45+02:00 Ben Morieson <p>The <em>Fieldwork Trilogy</em>&nbsp;ran over 6 years and was intended to create a public discourse on the merits of creating public space or democratizing common areas within a high-density urban environment. The series of public interventions provoked discussion within a general public as to the purpose of public space and how to create it by ‘colonising’ pieces of the urban terrain. By using gardens (guerilla gardens) and claiming a space by&nbsp;the public, a place&nbsp;can be&nbsp;created within a built-up urban environment&nbsp;to be used by the community for leisure and other social activities. <em>Fieldwork I </em>was the beginning of a trilogy that used the public interaction to establish this ‘place’ or series of ‘places’. This was extended by incorporating the train line that ran along the Western edge of the site and became the genesis of <em>Fieldwork II – The Colonies</em>. The demand for public engagement with this version was greater and more radical and drew more passionate responses. A more ephemeral work, Fieldwork III – Las Colonias set up the dialogue but also highlighted a more nuanced and pre-existing culture of public space. &nbsp;</p> 2022-12-31T00:00:00+01:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Ben Morieson