Day 7: Design cities as brands

I went today to a conference of “City brand”. The main speaker was the Spanish urban designer Toni Puig, an amazing writer and a very motivated social innovator. He speaks about the city as a brand and the change who can it make to the cities. His method was truly amazing and shocking. i recreated it on post it:

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He believes with strong passion in arts as a factor of change in people’s life, cities and economies. His thesis is very simple: cities are a great brand. If we squeeze all the potential of cities through good urban politics and a big media campaign, we could improve the local economy, arts and people’s welfare with the attraction of tourists and market investment. Who cares Tony Puig’s stuff? Are we talking to landscape yet? The answer is yes, we talking about landscapes too. I think that we should debate the idea of “sell the landscapes with art and respectful of identities”.

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If we don’t believe in that idea, we cannot do anything in urban spaces never. It is completely necessary to incorporate in all urban planning team or art group – whatever it is our proposal about landscapes, arts or identity management – the expertise of designer and media.
It’s completely out of our time think in frozen forever the landscape, the arts or the identities. At the contrary, if we create value and promote the good appraisal of them: we are the firsts to defend it. One of his books cites a phrase of Paul Valery: “the future isn’t what it was.” He thinks that Valery was right about it: there are an urgent idea of freedom to create another life  and another better world.

Days 3-4: Art Interventions taken the city

This last two days I participated in two Art Fairs at Santiago: FIIS and #100en1día.

The first of both was FIIS. FIIS is an international festival completely dedicated to show the social innovation, organized by a local crazy great people who dreams with a better world. They had really wonderful speakers and the festival ends with a great music festival in the Bicentennial Park of Vitacura. The main ideas that I take from the festival was:

  1. I learn about the real common people like us can change their environment and their communities with the help of the art, design, music and social innovation.
  2. The radical collaboration is a really good method to promote “thinking outside the box” and shake our prejudices.
  3. Social Innovation could solve many problems of communities, especially in those who exist a serious problem of poverty and scarcity of inversion. The collaboration between the market forces and the social needs could be – finally – solved with the promotion of creative economy.

DSC05867The second one was the urban intervention festival called #100en1Día (#100in1Day) at Santiago. It consists of 100 urban interventions on different types of media: visual arts, design, workshops, sculpture, recycling, dance, etc. Everyone could create, participate and collaborate with the experience. I participated in two of them: Kiss Route and Human Rights (photo above). What I learned from both experiences?

  1. Everyone can contribute with the improvement of public spaces, specially with art interventions. The festival a complete success, and I think it was for the hungry of the people and communities for recuperate the public spaces.
  2. Urban interventions could be more accessible for everyone in the city, it is a cheap and quickly method from creating remarkable experiences in pedestrians.
  3. This brief art experiences creates a pause in the daily routine of public space users (pedestrians, bikers, tourists, city workers, etc.), even also gives an approach to new arts and media that the common or poor people haven’t been access in the traditional ways that arts are managed: galleries, museums and universities.
  4. Next year, I will participate in both festivals… I am very excited about create some urban intervention about landscape, art and identity.