When I was an early disrupter (with Hadas Zemer Ben-Ari and Maxime Morel)

In 2007, while studying at the Design Academy Eindhoven, Hadas, Maxime and I had chance of joining forces to work on an assignment together. The assignment consisted in designing something for the Dapperbuurt neighbourhood in Amsterdam. This neighbourhood is highly standardized in its architecture and design of the public space. Thus resulting in a surrounding that does not reflect or respond to the identity and needs of the people who inhabit it.

We observed that Dapperbuurtian kids have very peculiar habits that distinguish them from the rest of the Amsterdammers: they use to write with chalk on walls, play on the pavements, hang out in the neighbourhood. We mapped all these habits, published them in a book and then reacted by re-designing the standard elements, such as tiles, bricks, seats, fences in order to enhance those activities and leave a trace of what the Dapperbuurt is for the next generations of inhabitants and visitors.

Bricks became chalk-holders
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The 30x30cm tiles of the pavement became landscapes for playing with toys

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Some bars in the local fences have been changed into flexible elements that only the local kids know and can use as secret passages
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