Exhibit Columbus has released five new design concepts commissioned for Washington Street in the Bartholomew County city. The five Washington Street Civic Projects are part of the the 2019 exhibition, which will feature 18 temporary installations in total and opens to the public August 24. 

Exhibit Columbus has created a concept of “good design and the community” as the theme for this year. Architects, artists and designers will create outdoor installations that use Columbus’s built heritage as context and inspiration.

Joining the five previously announced design concepts by the J. Irwin and Xenia S. Miller Prize Recipients and the six University Design Research Fellows, the Washington Street Civic Projects will showcase work created by five organizations dedicated to using architecture, art, and design to connect communities, and make cities more equitable and sustainable.

The participating organizations that will each transform a site in the city are:

  • Borderless Studio- Chicago
  • Extrapolation Factory- New York
  • LA Más -Los Angeles
  • People for Urban Progress- Indianapolis
  • PienZa Sostenible -Mexico City 

The LA Más project, titled Thank U, Next is an informal meeting space for Columbus that aims to unite people from all parts of the city and from all backgrounds to have shared civic experiences.

In a news release, the area is described as a place seen by many for the middle class and wealthy, and the project is an “explicit and implicit invitation” to working class residents to redefine Washington Street.

This portion of the project features an intricate moveable table that adapts to a variety of activities and a schedule of programming hosted by Columbus community organizations. A rendering from the organization shows the table being used for speed-dating, knitting, classes and other community events. 

“The Washington Street Civic Projects provide a unique lens through which we hope to examine the notion of civic engagement through exhibition,” said Anne Surak, Exhibit Columbus director of exhibitions, in a news release. “These innovative organizations use architecture and design as tools of collaboration to effect positive change in their own cities, and we are excited to have them develop temporary projects in our community.”

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