New narratives for
public space

Date 2018–Ongoing
Location Siggiewi, Malta

‘Space: a continuous area or expanse which is free, available, or unoccupied’.

‘PLAYSPACE: New narratives for public space’ is a Valletta 2018 and a Valletta Design Cluster event, developed and delivered by Valletta-based creative studios We Live Here and AP Valletta, in consultation with Invisible Playground (Berlin), Siggiewi Local Council and the Siggiewi Local Council for Children.

In a society which faces more and more pressures on public space, the need to consider its importance for recreation and encounter has become more urgent than ever. We believe that society can only change through education. With this in mind, our workshop was conceived and designed to allow children to experience the negotiation and decision-making processes that take place in communities and to reconsider the use of public space.

As active members of the community, children don’t really have much of a voice, as regards social matters, yet they are deeply affected by the decisions that we take about the urban environment. This experience aims to give them the opportunity to ask themselves what public space is, and to imagine, in teams, what that public space, currently used for parking cars, could be.

During a preliminary session, attended by children involved in the Siggiewi Local Council for Children, participants were asked to consider the differences between private and public space and were given a general overview about the workshop. Later, they came up with a series of activities and imaginary places that would feature in PLAYSPACE.

This workshop is intended as a pioneer for a wider project intended to raise awareness amongst young (and older citizens) as to the importance of public space in local communities. Raising awareness today, allows young citizens to make a difference in the future.

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