Women in Design




Block Party
Department of Play
Kate Balug + Maria Lucia Vidart

Block Party reimagines the building block as an assemblage of two interlinking units. The block units are made of lightweight, resilient foam and fit together to create airy, curvilinear shapes of limitless size. Shapes are limited only by collaborators' imagination in free play, but the system has capacity to produce a space-filling polyhedron if blocks are arranged in a 1:2 ratio by alternating the "x" and "y" shapes at right angles.

Department of Play is an art collective co-founded by Katarzyna Balug and Maria Lucia Vidart, which creates ‘temporary play zones’ in public space: opportunities to step out of the everyday and inhabit imagined worlds. Participants envision alternative futures and collaboratively create artifacts from those futures, while asking uncomfortable questions and sharing life experience and knowledge. The collective posits the city as a malleable, continuous construction that emerges out of countless moments of experimentation by any and all of its inhabitants. The works shown here were funded by ArtPlace America in 2016.