ILLUSTRATED POSTCARDS OF GUIMARÃES

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  • Community engagement
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YOUTH VISIONS OF URBAN LANDSCAPE

Illustrated postcards of Guimarães is a pedagogical project in landscape studies and one of the actions of Guimarães’ Landscape Plan operated by the Landscape Laboratory.

This action encourages child engagement in landscape and participation of the urban future of Guimarães, using postcards as a means of expression.

The project is encouraged by several international initiatives that improve youth participation in local development. As well, it aims towards fulfilling Article 6 of the European Landscape Convention, in terms of promoting actions related to the role of landscape in education.

In order to understand the landscape, youngsters are challenged to first understand the conceptual framework of the triad space-place-landscape. Secondly, they
are challenged to discuss the urban geography by chronologically ordering the historical and contemporary postcards of the most iconic square, Toural Square.

Third, participants are challenged to experiment with copies of 6 current postcards of streets, squares and historical places, as a way of thinking about the urban future. Scribbling away with the postcards, the outcomes of this activity will be the expression of children’s eyes in the urban landscape, by proposing new perspectives, uses and needs, creating new senses of place and ultimately, suggesting the city of tomorrow.

The project’s focus group was constituted by children from Children’s Activity Center, Study Centers and Schools, with an age range between 6-13 years old that produced almost 200 postcards. Participation in landscape can go beyond, and be fulfilled with effective and participatory tools as children are more innovative, because there are no limits to their imagination. This project also shows how cities can promote youth as a priority in urban matters in order to address sustainable solutions.

The collected visions about landscape provided evidence for active urban change, a practical tool for the creation of better cities and new social interactions.

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