Last year, we shared a story about seesaws. Yes, seesaws are simple structures found in many playgrounds, but these particular seesaws were different. Rather than being installed at playgrounds, these seesaws were installed on a fence along the US and Mexico border where a private group had erected a steel fence border wall. Needless to say, this area isn’t a happy or fun place but, for a moment, the installation of these pink seesaws brought a bit of joy and hope to a place often associated with sadness and despair. Kids and adults from both sides of the fence enjoyed the installation together, as the seesaw would only work if there was a person on each side pumping it up.
Who came up with this idea? The “Teeter-Totter Wall” was conceived by two people, Professor of Architecture Ronald Rael from UC Berkeley and Professor of Design Virginia San Fratello from San Jose State University. Recently, the two professors were awarded the 2020 Beazley Design of the Year award from The Design Museum in London. According to the museum, Rael and San Fratello were given the award because the Teeter-Totter Wall “remains an inventive and poignant reminder of how human beings can transcend the forces that seek to divide us.” Well said! We’re wondering what other playground structures might help bring humans together?
What do you think?