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Public spaces are probably more important now than ever, during the COVID-19 crisis. They give us a path towards respite and mindfulness. When we go for a daily walk or go for a bike ride, or go to sit in the park, we are seeking a way out of our mundane everyday lifestyles. We are seeking a breath of fresh air, a medium for play and a place we can relax or unwind.

Unfortunately, during COVID-19 many of our parks, squares and public spaces are closed and not open to the public, because it is difficult to maintain social distancing and the possibilities of being affected by COVID-19 is higher. …

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Source: Robin Brailsford

When I first saw images of Robin Brailsford’s public artworks, on social media, I was drawn and captivated. Creativity is at the essence of her art works. Her art is fascinating and interactive at the same time. Although it takes a long process for the art to be made and commissioned, it feels like the response and engagement from the public via the interactive nature of her artworks, makes it all the more worth it! …

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Source: Laura Allen, UNSPLASH

We all get influenced by negativity from time to time. Someone makes us angry, we refuse to take responsibility for our lives, and constantly blame others for the way we feel and react. There are many such paths to destructive behavior.

What we need to understand is that there are also many parts to constructive behavior. Constructive behavior involves optimism, positivity, having patience and replacing the negative thoughts with their positive counterparts. Its all just a choice. Life is full of choices and thinking positively is also a choice. …

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Source: Rights reserved by Alejandro Cartagena

I recently had the opportunity to speak to Alejandro Cartegena, the popular urban photographer who is reputed around the world for his projects on urbanism. Looking at his work featured on the GEO Magazine, I was impressed and contacted him. He not only takes amazing photographs but is also very friendly and pleasant to speak with.

Take a look at the interview below, and get to know him a little better! His answers do not disappoint!

Thejas: Can you tell us a little about yourself and what you do?

Alejandro: I was born in Dominican Republic and moved to Mexico in the 1990s. I currently work as an independent photographer, producing works for books and…

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Source: Jon Tyson, UNSPLASH

Social distancing is the norm this year. But will social distancing last? With New Zealand going back to Alert level 1, life will be almost normal in many of public life and social distancing will not be needed because there will not be community transfers of COVID-19. Other small countries such as Taiwan and Singapore are also in the same boat as NZ.

However, many larger density population countries are still affected by social distancing and it might mean that people might not interact with public art the way they used to with tactility and engagement. …

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Source: Chris Ross Harris — UNSPLASH

With the circumstance of Corona Virus, the start of 2020 has been very uncertain for many cities around the world. There has definitely been a distinction between the public and private realms and much more emphasis on our homes and the private realm. Although this gives us a sense of respite away from the bustling everyday city life that was prior to COVID-19, many people are still struggling to manage both their physical and mental health during this crisis. …

An increasing number of places are creating interactive public spaces through public art, sculptures, fountains and multimedia screen usage to enhance community gathering by attracting people to cluster around in open spaces. Interactive work produced in a public space is usually based on “implicitly or explicitly shared meanings between the artist and the community, and consists of actions or works executed on behalf of the community as a whole.” This gives an opportunity for the public to create symbols associated to their spaces facilitating an enjoyable and valuable outdoor experience for the people usually free of cost. …

I was just walking in UB City one day to encounter a public art worth a thought. It was made up of recycled paper and as I stood there contemplating the art, the artist came up to me and had a chat. What materialised after that brief encounter was this interview. Kavya Maddapa is the founder of BlueCat Paper and also the artist of the UB City Mall artwork that is being displayed till early-December. …

Note: This article was first published on Planning Tank Website

Smart City is a concept that brings people’s use of technology and city development together. The Smart City Mission organised by the Government of India has a total of 99 winning proposals and has a budget of over 201979 Crores which will affect over 99,486,840 of the Indian population. This feat will vastly improve the infrastructure by providing more public spaces and amenities to the Indian population. However, communication and technology will be the central aspect of Smart Cities rather than ‘human scale’. People in the lower economic scale will benefit the most as mobile phones will become cheaper and access to internet and information about the world becomes available to the general public. This is similar to smart phone growth where India has immensely developed from the technology, Smart Cities might also have a positive impact on the society. …

Note: This article was first published in Planning Tank Website

Placemaking is a great movement which has revived many streets worldwide. Even in India, with the growth of local artists and murals coming around the country, and independent artists making their mark, placemaking is being implemented. There are many ways to re-activate our streets if we think about how we can do so. Paint and colour is a great way to make it happen but also a simple thing like adding chairs or stones where people can sit, can bring people together and make the community more cohesive. Many people are using placemaking around the world to bring people together and not only for that but also to add a bit of difference in the way the place is used. …


Thejas Jagannath

Public Art/Public Space Enthusiast. Completed Master of City Planning in NZ. Written many articles and two theses. Interested in exploring new things.

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