Diébédo Francis Kéré

What better way to spend a rainy Wednesday morning than wandering round the amazing Sensing Spaces exhibition at the Royal Academy. Was really struck by Diébédo Francis Kéré’s installation that encouraged viewers to co-create the architectural space that he had begun. The viewers – and being a Wednesday morning had an average age of 4 – were able to use long coloured straws to add to and embellish the structure, which was like a cave with a small through passage from one end to the other. It was his quote on the wall that really struck me:

“I believe it is important to engage with people in the process of building so they have an investment in what is developed. Through thinking and working together people find that the built object is part of a bonding experience.”

This relates to Bourriaud’s notion of Relational Aesthetics, and that the art is less about the representation of an image or physical form and more about the human interactions that it facilitates. In the public realm, the aim is to create spaces where people can interact and build relationships with each other. Creating art or architecture or experiences which people can contribute to or co-design allows this.

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