Saturday, May 25, 2013

New Life

As warmer weather approaches and administrative efforts begin to fruit, a new energy has begun at Spencer's. With the help of Flint Public Art Project, Spencer's holds a series of events as a part of the Free City public art festival.

The mirrored stair is opened to relieve congestion between the newly reunited halves of the house

University of Michigan: Ann Arbor design students install a responsive LED lighting system within the wall cavity

Musicians Frank Pahl and Tim Holmes play homemade instruments made from sewing machines, propane canisters,and bike parts


Der Vorfuhreffekt - a theater duo out of Baltimore - puts on a puppet show.

A crowd gathered within these unlikely walls, and - if only for an hour or two - the audience didn't see the place as one of abandonment or hopelessness, but of laughter and inspiration.

While these temporary events might seem insignificant or irrelevant to the larger structural and infrastructural tasks for the building, they're an essential part of the process. These gatherings are a gesture - that the building is still very much alive. They're also an integral part of the planning and design process that most architects skip (or do not know exists): a kind of testing of waters for unconventional activity, their spatial needs, and vice versa. And for a project which is seeking on-going funding, this goes a long way in painting a picture for investors and grantors.

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