With design collective Unqualified Design Studio, Amy Learmonth designs interactive and participatory experiences that aim to make everyday citizens (cultural) producers, rather than consumers of public space. Drawing on the concept of ‘serious play’, her goal is to generate meaningful social interactions in the public realm through spatial interventions, physical installations, performances, spectacles, community workshops and games. These playful interactions address issues of spatial justice in the built environment with varying levels of explicitness. Serious Play suggests it is time for a new kind of activism – one that is more inclusive, welcoming and non‐judgmental. In this episode, Amy and her collaborators re‐imagine the format and the boundaries of protest and action by occupying public space in radical, fun and subtly transgressive ways. They blur the distinction between ‘spectator’ and ‘performer’ and invite people to realise their own power and agency through the medium of play.
Amy Learmonth is a registered architect practising in Brisbane and a co-founder of Unqualified Design Studio (UDS), a collective working in the space between public art, architecture and spectacle performance. UDS’ work has been featured at festivals around Australia, including Vivid Sydney. Amy is passionate about public design discourse, and regularly speaks about architecture at community events. She graduated from the Master of Architecture at the University of Queensland in 2014 with the Australian Institute of Architects QIA Memorial Medallion.
Marisa Georgiou – artist, co‐founder of Unqualified Design Studio, co‐founder of people+artist+place.
Amanda Haworth – performing artist, applied theatre practitioner.
Megan Keene – photographer, publisher and photo‐editor.
Fiona McAlpine – architectural engagement strategist, founding member of the ProVibers – Catalysts for Connection in our Community.
Aleea Monsour – creative producer, theatre maker, community theatre facilitator.
Natalie Osborne – founding member of The Right to the City Brisbane, co‐curator of Brisbane Free University, co-contributor to Radio Reversal, lecturer at Griffith University.
10:30AM – 12PM
A participatory performance at Federation Square
2 – 4PM
A dinner table-style conversation and introduction to Serious Play
This episode is part of WORKAROUND.
WORKAROUND engages with a movement of women focused on advocacy and activism within an expanded field of architecture. Each of these practitioners works towards positive change in the built environment and its surrounding cultures. WORKAROUNDis an online broadcast and a program of live events. Across fourteen daily episodes, fourteen Australian practitioners each present a critique, conversation, interview, workshop or performance that articulates their strategies and workarounds and reflects on their activist practice.