October 1, 2020

People United’s Kind Places & Spaces project explores the positive impact that creative art & design can have in community spaces. We’re particularly interested in looking at how these creative interventions might spread positive messages, bring people together and encourage communities to think or behave in a pro-social way. You can find out more here.

Ella’s project, The Stage Is Yours: Kindness Seating Installation is just one of the projects we commissioned as part of the Kind Places & Spaces initiative. We think it’s wonderful and hope that you enjoy it too. We’d love to hear what you think in the comments box below.

If you think you can help us to install a Kindness Seating Installation – please get in touch. We would be thrilled to work with you, Ella and your local community to collaboratively adapt and personalise the design so that it celebrates your area.

Ella Heather Moore: The Stage Is Yours: Kindness Seating Installation

A soaring architectural seating structure designed to be installed in urban public spaces, inspiring people to gather, interact and converse, while enabling social distancing.

Illustration of a paved open space in a town or city centre. There are buildings and trees lining the space. In the centre are people walking around, sitting and talking to each other. A semi-translucent blue structure has been drawn into the space, some parts suitable for sitting on, some parts spanning the space over people's heads. Along the side of the image are three circles, each depicting details of the structure. The first looks like it has blue vertebrae in it, the second shows part of the structure up close with the phrase "remind someone that they're loved" written on it, the third shows how the structure could form a long, repeating installation.

Ella Heather Moore and Jessica Gardner, 2020

Ella is a second year Liberal Arts student with a flair for creativity and the arts. She is following a pathway incorporating psychology and the humanities, and for this project she has collaborated with architecture student Jessica Gardner, who helped translate her ideas and sketches into these digital drawings for The Stage Is Yours: Kindness Seating Installation.

Ella’s Kindness Seating Installation, a design idea for a seating structure, plays with the flow of people through busy urban spaces. It encourages the public to weave dance-like pathways through the space with opportunities to interact, pause and unite, allowing people to pay attention to staying safe. It can draw you close, or enable social distancing depending on the circumstances.

We asked Ella ‘If your Kind Places & Spaces design were brought to life in the real world, how do you think it would positively impact on people and place?’ She said:

“If my Kind Places and Spaces idea were brought to life, I believe it would positively impact the community though enhancing our day-to-day interactions whilst promoting meaningful connections between individuals.

 

Rapidly, our world is becoming increasingly digitalised. We bury our faces in screens and commonly exist in a virtual reality- causing us to miss chances for spontaneous encounters with others within daily life. The urbanist, Jane Jacobs, suggests these exchanges create a dynamic place full of life and spirit, describing our movement across urban spaces as a “sidewalk ballet”. In likening this motion to an intricate dance composed of complex criss-crossing and weaving of pedestrians, she suggests shared public spaces become enlivened due to the intricate urban choreography we perform. She further states we all have a role to play in this performance of a place- helping construct an elaborate narrative, keeping the beating heart of cities pulsing.

 

A digital image of the seating structure. It is blue, with rounded parts at floor-level for sitting on and long sweeping curves above that join together above head height so that they can be walked under.

Ella Heather Moore and Jessica Gardner, 2020

My idea seeks to re-invigorate urban public spaces by enhancing this notion of an improvised urban choreography- helping keep the rhythm of our cities alive. My proposed seating structure, comprising large flowing arches and curves, prompts us to walk beneath, along and through the piece. As a result, a dance-like motion is produced- physically intertwining and uniting us. The structure, sculpted into benches and sun canopies designed for multiple people, encourages us to enjoy public spaces together and be with each other. It invites us to fill these areas with life, pause for a moment from our busy schedules and spend more time interacting with one another meaningfully.

 

Close-up of part of the seating structure. Two blue translucent parts overlap, demonstrating the translucency. One has text in black script saying "Share a smile with someone" and "Remind someone they're loved"

Ella Heather Moore and Jessica Gardner, 2020

My structure seeks to inspire kindness, as it calls for us to coalesce, fuse together, and show compassion. Engraved in the surface of the piece, messages of kindness will encourage positive interaction and acts of care. Reading “share a smile with someone” or “remind a person they’re loved”, will allow kindness to ripple through society- mirroring the movement of the sculpture and fluid motion of cities.

 

From above, the structure resembles a human backbone, with individual vertebrae as the seats and canopies, to reflect a dancer’s anatomy and remind us that kindness is part of human nature. Echoing this notion further, either end of the installation is sculpted into wave-like configurations. These resemble waves shown on a heart rate monitor- helping to evoke how kindness is at the core”.

 

Digital image showing a thin blue curved line curling from bottom left to top right. Perpendicular to the curved line are 13 objects which look almost like vertebrae, the ones nearest each end are smaller and the ones in the centre are longer.Ella Heather Moore and Jessica Gardner, 2020

www.earthensymphony.wordpress.com @ellaheathermoore @earthen.symphony
@jessgardner4

 

Kind Canterbury is funded & supported by:

Arts Council England logo and text "Supported by Arts Council England"Canterbury City Council Logo

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