To Polly Brannan

9 July 2014

Polly Brannan
Liverpool, UK

Madrid, Spain
9 July 2014

Hi Polly

Yesterday, I had the chance to see Playgrounds: Reinventing the Square, the exhibition at the Reina Sofia that you and I were wondering about. It was much more about contemporary spaces of public protest — Tahrir Square, Gezi Park, Puerta del Sol, Zuccotti Park, Frank Ogawa Plaza — than I expected. But there were also a lot of historical texts and images of play and pedagogy in urban spaces; a lot about how children use cities, especially in the mid-to-late twentieth century. I wish you could have seen that material: it would have been interesting to you in relation to your work for the Liverpool Biennial. It reminded me of Colin Ward’s anarchistic urban pedagogy and especially his book from the 1970s, The Child in the City. Do you know it? Like Playgrounds, it’s an account of how children can and cannot reside in cities, and about the pedagogical implications of that.

By the way, somebody (maybe Vanessa) told me that you were thinking of titling our fall sessions The Resident. Sounds good to me. Every story needs a protagonist (and each story has only one, so I’m told). I look forward to hearing what you have in mind for the structure of that week, and for the list of participants to be invited.

I’m going to join Sally and Vanessa in Berlin tomorrow.

See you in September.