These public playgrounds were located in parks, squares, and derelict sites, and consisted of minimalistic aesthetic play equipment that was supposed to stimulate the creativity of children. Over the last decades, these playgrounds have been studied by sociologists, theorists of art and architecture, and psychologists. However, it is argued that the standardization e. This standardization, which was arguably the result of the aesthetic motives of the designer, might be appealing to children when simply looking at the equipment, but it is not of overriding importance to them when playing in it.

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Zolosida In the Athens Charterle Corbusier opted for a massive rebuilding of cities in which the functions of labor, living, and leisure are spatially segregated, and street life was reduced to traffic flows e. The amd configuration, on the other hand, consisted of nine stones of different diameters and heights that were placed at varying distances from each other.

Facebook Follow us on Facebook for news and special picks from the editors. Proeve eener bepaling van het spelelement der cultuur. This psychology started from the physicalist assumption that the environment is meaningless, consisting solely of matter playvrounds motion. This vision was radicalized in the sixties, when the entire city clogged up due to the explosive rise of car traffic, and urban planners introduced a proposal for an extensive network of metro lines and highways to cut through the old fabric of the city.

The Embarrassment of the Riches. Although van Eyck stopped working at the public works department after 5 years to become a lecturer in art history and start his own company th, he continued working on his playgrounds.

This was the basic premise of the large-scale construction of new post-war neighborhoods in the fifties such as Buitenveldert and the Westelijke Tuinsteden, resulting in the well known open housing blocks with large amounts of light, air, greenery and monotony.

In Amsterdam, Cornelis van Eesteren, longtime president of the CIAM, was to implement his General Extension Plan Algemeen Uitbreidingsplan — AUP ofone the first modern urban masterplans to be based on extensive statistical forecasts of demographic and transport developments 1.

The authors declare that the research was conducted in the absence of any commercial or financial relationships that could be construed as a potential conflict of interest. In itself, a playground seems a rather sweet and non-controversial undertaking, but at the time, it also functioned yhe a crystallization point of cultural critique.

The first playground on Bertelmanplein was a test case. In one of his essays van Eyck wrote of cities: We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions. Of course the use of empty plots was also a tactical solution. Liane Lefaivre and lngeborg de Roode. This element that van Eyck designed in was rather popular cty the decades that followed and is now placed in the garden of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

Besides paying attention to affordances at the scale of the individual e. There are two aspects of these playgrounds that we would like to emphasize. Or they can climb to the top via the sliding part using their hand and feet. Climbing frames, arches, igloos, tumbling bars, jumping stones, and climbing walls all found their way into unsightly wastelands and boring squares thanks to the visionary help of architect Aldo van Eyck, who transformed urban spaces in Amsterdam into more than playgrounds between and Most books about architecture or town planning are earnest treatises: The Schmela House itself is a case in point, containing some extraordinary spatial moves, yet with a somewhat grim institutional feel in its texturing and detail, with bare unforgiving concrete-block walls even in the living spaces of the top-floor apartment.

The hemispherical jungle gym was not just something to climb. As we have seen, these playgrounds not only afforded children to play in the city of Amsterdam playgounds World War Eycck and stimulated community lifethey were also of great architectural significance e.

Green Places 28th May, The standardized configuration consisted of nine equal-sized stones that were symmetrically organized within the form of a square. Press Esc to cancel.

How do we see the environment around us? Van Eyck intuited that such spatial ambiguities would also provoke children to engage with one another, toddlers tending to help each other crawl and totter about. In like fashion, one can conceive of his play sculptures as elements designed for children wnd certain action capabilities. The concept of affordances has already proved its mettle in the field of architecture e.

It refers to what the animal can do in his environment, what it means to him Gibson, The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author s or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice.

How to feel at home in the modern city, this machine of mass rationalization? Begin typing your search above and press return to search. The young architect had already gained a reputation as a critic of the mechanistic approach to city planning taken by some of his architectural colleagues. Ina critical group of young architects formed within the CIAM, van Eyck was one its most vocal members. Contrary to the brightly colored plastic that is so popular today in playground design, these materials fit in naturally with the building materials of the city.

One of the first and most symbolic of these projects was the redevelopment of the Nieuwmarkt itself. All elements were equal: It made me recall some of the classrooms of my youth: The playgrounds were not isolated architectural interventions.

As van Eyck put it poetically:. Related Posts

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Aldo van Eyck’s Playgrounds: Aesthetics, Affordances, and Creativity

Kebar This perspective was initiated in the s and s by a number of authors e. At that time the contrived playgrounds were generally isolated places—they were surrounded by a fence with a gate, and children had to pay a little fee or be a member to enter it. One of the most important aspects of the play elements van Eyck designed is that they do not have a designated function: The Science of Play: Blog Obituary 04 Apr How do we see what things are good for? The playgrounds were fantastic because the objects were simple: In the s and s, the American psychologist James Gibson developed an ecological approach to psychology. Or they can climb to the top via the sliding part using their hand and feet. A central tenet of this approach is that the use of objects and their affordances always takes place in and is largely shaped by the sociocultural environment.





Aldo Van Eyck: Designing for Children, Playgrounds




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