Writing the City


Our newest proposal for an urban event organized by British Council Bucharest.

Here is the entire text presentation:

Poetry lives a secret life all around us. Whenever we deal with anything abstract ideas, emotions, feelings,
concepts, thoughts, we inevitably resort to metaphor. It is a way of thought before it is a way with words.
Just look at the words around you!
Through this event, several public spaces will get to be “written” with poetry, turning into a series of
interactive aesthetic experiences. The text is completely central to the installation, and our commitment is
to use design to enhance and reveal the text and meaning behind it. Presenting the subject matter simply
and truthfully, making it live and breathe.
Installations will be placed in spaces with existing character, ambience and dramatic potential, offering a
creative space very different from that of the traditional. The poetry should no longer be confined to the
indoors, but should invade the entire space.
Poetry reflects human nature, how we conceptualize reality, how we relate to one another ‐‐ by
experiencing it, we can get a window onto what makes us tick.
Visual Solution
‐ Using the city as a rite of passage ‐ the whole being greater than the sum of the parts
The Word Ladder is a game in which a start word in changed into the end word progressively,
creating an existing word at each step.
‐ Making the materiality nearly disappear by using mainly lighting installations and new software, in
order for the actual texts to stand out
‐ Pattern recognition – (same “language” for each “sentence”) using raw shapes that embody
patterns of texts
‐ Use of colour through Synesthesia ‐ understanding one concept in the context of another –
metaphor in the context of color.


1. Entice
Calea Rahovei
The starting point is embodied by an intersection in one of the residential communist districts in
Bucharest, where the quality of living is low – Rahova. This empty space will act like a vacuum,
absorbing people to the center of the city.
Physical operation –reflectors with written texts will be placed on the existing lighting poles in a
way that it projects in the directions of the pedestrian crossings. Poetry will literally bring more
light (even safety for the passers) into a rather darksome space for living.
2. Contact
Tram 32
Meaning can be found in an the smallest gestures – like when you found yourself holding a crossbar inside
a tram on your way to work. A few minutes in contact with a verse will leave a definite mark on your way
of perceiving life.
Physical operation –embossed verses fixed on the crossbars in key places (for the vertical bars at the
1.20m). Same text will appear on the window in front, in different colors representing a type of poetic
construction. Therefore the light coming from outside will reflect rainbows inside.
3. Connection
Unirii Square
Upon encountering the “hats” in the very center of Bucharest, people may feel like astronauts
approaching a geometric, stainless steel meteorite. Yet step beneath and its effect is revealed – you’re
standing in the shade of poetry.
Physical operation –On a bigger scale aproach, the pergolas (hats) reflect the texts on the pavement of the
park alley. Bright light shines through color‐filtered glass panels, creating shifting prismatic bands of colors
on the pavement. The same effect will be obtained by night, with the use of reflectors fixed on the top of
the installation.
4. Communicate
Metro line Unirii‐Romana
This “chapter” uses the “gaze” in terms of how people are relating to each other – bodies become
canvases, and a curious eye looks back at the curious viewer.
Physical operation –reflectors will be mounted face to face with the metro line on the connecting on the
connecting root, calibrated after different positions a person can take while waiting for the metro.
5. Rich High
British Council
The end of the passage can’t be anything else but an installation that would make people look up and
reach the sky through poetry.
Physical operation – a white “cloud” constructed with light materials and a white membrane stretched on
wires fixed to the entrance of the British Council, reaching as high as the adjacent building that inevitably
keeps the villa in permanent shade throughout the day. During the night, a reflector mounted inside the
“cloud” will bring poetry to life.


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