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The idea and tradition of play has changed drastically over the years as technology has improved. Where kids would initially beg their parents to go outside and run around at a park, now they are just as likely to stay at home and turn on the television or play a video game. BLOOM however is a new kind of game, one that will inspire and spark the creativity of not only the young, but also the young at heart. Defined as an ‘urban toy’, BLOOM is a distributed social game and collective ‘gardening’ experience that seeks the engagement of people in order to grow various formations. 

Courtesy of Alisa Andrasek and Jose Sanchez

The game starts out as bench structure constructed by the designers as the initial seed, from there individuals can add pieces and create new sequences that can be used as urban furniture or merely unpredictable works of art inhabiting the space. Each cell has three points in which they can be connected along their outline allowing them to be compiled both two and three dimensionally, resulting in an almost limitless potential of forms. The neon pink color of the BLOOM cells pays homage to the 2012 Olympics, since it’s the official color of the games, while making it eye catching and engaging. There is also this idea of assembly, disassembly, and re-usability that challenges traditional construction, not that this design should be seen as a permanent fixture.”] 

Courtesy of Alisa Andrasek and Jose Sanchez

What is interesting to note are the underlying messages that can be taken from this project. The designers believed that each individual cell can do nothing on its own, it is only when several are connected that patterns begin to form and the actual ‘design’ emerges where the countless possibilities can be seen. The same I think could be said about those playing with these pieces and arranging them as everyone’s imagination and creativity are different. The final outcome as a whole can only exist though the collective actions of many different people interacting with it, changing it, playing with it, and thus begins to become representative of the community as a whole.

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