Architects have toyed with building the perfect city “from scratch” for centuries. Brasilia, New Delhi, Chandigarh – and many others – were designed with optimism and built on the belief that architecture could reshape humanity from the ground up.
Yet most of these cities have failed to deliver on that promise. Why?
With his new sculpture in the window at 313 Design Market, ‘Toying With Utopia’, sculptor Raymond Girard cheekily suggests that what these cities lack is a sense of play. His alternative model for the model city of the future is a fanciful, colourful and even mobile framework for creativity, personal growth and the true evolution of community.
‘Toying With Utopia’ is a site-specific arrangement of 50,000+ LegoTM bricks into a Habitat67-like fantasy city with 1000 terraced pavilions, an illuminated mega-tower and kinetic buildings on rails literally moving through the landscape. It is an optimistic assembly of shapes and forms that speaks to the inherent creativity and ever-evolving nature of cities, skylines and the communities they enable.
‘Toying With Utopia’ literally plays on Charles and Ray Eames’ truism that “toys are the prelude to serious ideas”. The structures are visible from passing streetcars and across Roncesvalles, reinforcing 313 Design Market’s goal of becoming the community hub and gathering spot for design lovers, young and old.