This semester my workshop is working with the City of Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) to help with the planning of the City's 2012 Cultural Plan. The 2012 Chicago Cultural Plan will provide insights on how to elevate the City as a global destination for creativity, innovation and excellence in the arts. The focus of the project will be to further build on Chicago’s vast cultural assets and vibrant community, established through the collaborative partnerships formed with the public and private sectors and civic community. Public engagement will play a key role in shaping Chicago’s cultural future.
Three student teams from the workshop will conduct user research, design, and deploy three placemaking prototypes in cultural hubs in selected neighborhoods, one at the Old Town School of Folk Music, another at the National Museum of Mexican Art/Pilsen neighbourhood, and the third at City Hall. The teams will deploy these prototypes in April-May, 2012 as well as monitor the prototypes to capture user information at these hubs. At the end of the project, these experiential located and portable prototypes will help DCASE augment traditional forms of research by listening to the voice of a larger diversity of Chicagoans as they move through their everyday lives.
Here are some pics from the mid term review of these prototypes. Keep in mind that these are still works in progress, and may or may not resemble the final installs. In these pictures you can see Jewel Malone, the Deputy Commissioner of Cultural Affairs; Julie Burros the Director of Cultural Planning; Ann Hickey, Director of Program Development; and Juana Guzman, the Vice President of the National Museum of Mexican Art.