Jennifer Aksu's playful public space keynote bemoans the fact that adults are "addicted to reality." As children, we are afforded the freedom to exercise play in many different realms and mediums. By engaging in these forms of play we become learners who discover, explore and invent entirely new world views. Unfortunately, we lose access to this privilege as we grow. Indeed, adults are limited to strict spaces and materials (such as casinos or video games) when we wish to indulge our sense of play.
In a quest to regain her imagination -- and the agency to enact it publicly -- Aksu joined a collective that designs public games for adults, titled 'Invisible Playground.' Through her work with the organization, Aksu learned to re-conceptualize public space from something transient to something shared. Most importantly, Aksu identified the egalitarian potential of the games, which are open to everyone willing to partake.
Aksu leaves us with four principals that will help us better enjoy our surroundings. She suggests that we know our habits (and are prepared to break them,) before going on to explore, re-think and share our newly experienced cities.