[NetBehaviour] Playful reconfigurations of the city: the work of Brad Downey

Olga olga.panades at gmail.com
Thu Apr 23 14:05:21 CEST 2009

Here I am again posting projects that work with the city,
reconfiguring urban landscapes and experiences... I hope this is of
interest to the list. In fact this is not a project but the work of
Brad Downey. I learnt about him in a talk he gave about street art at
Tate Modern last year. His projects seemed to be very fresh and
playful although they probably wouldn't stand hard critical scrutiny.
I still find it worth having a look.

One of the interventions he showed was this huge heart he cut off a
construction site. I guess big part of his charm relies on the same
ideas that traditional street art relies. Making rapid incursions in
public space, trespassing the limits of law, to leave a reconfigure
the city artistically.


I liked the Spontaneous Sculptures a lot as well, again for its
playfulness, naughtiness perhaps, and their colourful result..


"Subtle, comic and very often provocative, Downey aims to surprise the
viewer by illuminating how public and private property, and urban
space and personal experience, overlap in an era of increasing
privatization. He finds forgotten remnants of urban architecture to
re-invent and rejuvenate. These are then re-inserted into the everyday
landscape. The works are a temporary disruption, usually remaining in
place for as short a time as a few minutes, but also sometimes
becoming a permanent fixture in the landscape of the metropolis."


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