Open your eyes, and the gaps! This curious cure for common passer-by blindness is not a real-life project proposal, but a compelling way to draw attention to gapes and holes in the built fabric we have come to ignore. It uses fantasy LEGO buildings to envision how cities could use wasted spaces.
Spanish designers of Espai MGR took to the streets of Valencia, putting fantastic and colorful LEGO creations in various vacant lots, attracting us to (a lack of) things we would normally pass as pedestrians or drivers, unawares due to sheer familiarity.
Abandonments are a given even in the most active city, but do more damage than many people realize – particularly once we are used to them. While clever and certainly of a much larger scale, regardless, it seems likely that these folks drew some inspiration from another ongoing LEGO infill project that actually exists.
More from the designers
“Day by day we pass by vacant lots downtown. Just like an invisible metastasis generated in the heart of the city and extending to all its arteries. Neighborhoods that, although having a huge potential, have more and more unused spaces, a fact that does not at all promote a correct sustainable development. Years have made us immune to this problem. It’s a landscape we already recognize as typical of the central neighborhoods in Valencia.”
“Sometimes, the tourists are the ones who open our eyes by mentioning or questioning whether this situation is normal. On other occasions, we pay attention to it for a moment only because the secondary problems that those spaces imply affect us directly. But in most of the cases, they are only a part of our way. Like a gruyere cheese where the rats block any possibilities of reconstruction, while staring at us, far away from its holes.”
“This photographic work aims at calling people’s attention, just like painting those isolated walls yellow would. It demands the recreational use of those vacant lots through the eyes of a child, by filling them with impossible constructions, surrealistic installations in line with the problem. A children’s game as a neighbor’s shout, demanding the right to take part in their city.”