How can artists and designers support community capacity building efforts? Park Powers and Trash Academy are two projects taking differing approaches to “the means by which local area assets are brought together to improve the quality of life” (Townsand Price-Spratlen).
Park Powers began with a collaborative investigation by Damon Rich, students, local artists, MAP staff, and neighborhood partners into the question of how Philadelphia public space is designed, constructed, managed, and used. The results of the investigation were realized by as a set of graphic posters responding to the question: What does South Philly Have to Do to Get Mifflin Square Park Rebuilt How it Wants?
Trash Academy is participant-driven series of projects and actions around trash issues that tests and shares the best grassroots solutions that emerge.
Both projects grew out of Playgrounds for Useful Knowledge, a year-long project in South Philly by Cohabitation Strategies (CohStra) which sought the restructuring of urban spaces by promoting new social relations across cultural and economic divides.
The opening reception will feature a brief speaking program by Damon Rich and Park Powers/Trash Academy students.