LAB FOR URBAN IDEAS / c. 2011-2015

Alterritories Project

Algunos, pocos, viven desacostumbrándose.
Julio Cortázar, 1967

A Lab for Urban Ideas—

A city starts on foot. Such was the outset mindframe of the Alterritories Project, embodied in a series of in-situ Labs for Urban Ideas spanning from 2011 to 2015 —into which we adventured together with young people from different communities.

The Labs were designed as brief and playful experiences on different urban environments —in order to find design ideas for better cities: amongst things, people and places —senses and emotions. 
The Labs’ method proposed a collaborative approach to urban research that altogether imagined a new take on citizenship: as a way of engaging young people with public spaces, while raising awareness about its collective nature —through a creative discussion about the connection between individuality and a city. 

These Labs were the result of a multidisciplinary collaboration with many guests and allied local institutions, mainly in Mexico City, but spreading up to regional towns as Tonalá in Guadalajara or as far as Bandung in Indonesia.

Each Lab had its own quest: sometimes serving as a project’s field research activity, other, as spaces to inform social innovation practices or as creative enhancing therapies. Sometimes just for fun.
Over a hundred people joined in to collaborate. A creative side of the city awaited them behind normality, as it were, on the other side of the territory.

Here is a brief recording of some of their journeys.

Perceptive City v.1

Mexico City
How does perception define a City and viceversa? How can a cartography of experiences enhance the role of a designer? 

Participants: Architects and industrial designers.

Performing and New Media artists, Architects.

Allied Institution: National Autonomous University of Mexico.

Perceptive City v.2

Mexico City
What stories underlie the everyday cityscape? Could they be turned into design tools based on collective experiences?

Participants: Architects, industrial and graphic designers, artists.

Guests: Performing and New Media artists, architects and social scientists.

Allied Institution: National Autonomous University of Mexico.