Tales From Tibahni II: Park4All
Park4All is a new game in Tibahni, the city that is every city. We played and tested it on the 23rd of May in Hamburg and the internet.
Premise of the game
Tibahni is a city of many parks. Every empty square at the side of a street is a possible park to spawn.
rules (implicit and explicit mixed)
Just take a step aside and spawn parks: Use the space that is yours. Ignore the cars, do things. Collect materials in the cities. Furniture your park, set up a sign. Hang out and do things. Tell the story of the park. Move on to create a next park when you feel like it.
the tale (subjective perspective of 1 forscha)
I met the others after they had already spawned a park, and I had heard some tales they told about it in the radio. From what I heard, they were on the way to spawn a second park on a main road that I knew, so I joined there. It was surprisingly easy. There was a shopping cart already standing on an empty parking lot, and we just joined it, bringing more materials we found in the street. Every time a car drove by it was very loud, which made the hanging out a bit uncomfortable. One person played drums, another one tried listening to the birds, the the third one started a counting game of passing-by police cars. Would be great to have plants that separate the park from the street. As we leave, the Kiosk owner asks us if we put all the things there. We smile, shake our heads and move on. At this point, we're four to six people.
The third park we spawn is in a road with little traffic yet many people sitting in bars (technically: in front of them) and hanging out in the public space randomly. On our way to the empty lot – this time, there is already an office chair waiting – we see people squatting on some parking lots next to a Kiosk. We find carpets another soft chair item, a table and even a telefax in this road that we all combine for this park. Building it feels a lot like doing art all of a sudden, and less like a game. I think this is because we have so many people watching us. It's a performance vibe, not because we want to perform, but because we are made into performers by the hipsters in the bar and the way they look at us. We try watching the park from a semi-distance, as hanging out in it feels too performy after about half an hour. We see three people taking pictures of themselves in the park.
As we move on, we are three to four people now, we already collect items on the way to the next park. The streets are full of useful material and objects, and after these past experiences, we have developed a skill to see them as such. How we move as a group is determined by the game and our implicit knowledge. Our eyes are looking for useful things, we don't move as a closed group but with each one of us kinda hunting while heading in a semi-determined direction together.
With all our arms full of chairs, grills, wood, pallets, a small table... we find the perfect parking spot infront of an already existing park. it's two cars wide in a calmer street and we start arranging and furnishing, listening to the story we tell ourselves, chatting with passers by who are impressed with the idea. At some point, you even write a declaration: this is public space. use the space that is yours. #park4all spawn parks everywhere. I read the declaration out loud for our audio stream. I feels empowering.
As we want to watch this park and how people interact with it – kinda swiftly changing perspective from players to observators (or have we just been participating observators before?), we decide that we move to the other side of the road just to watch. As we just sit on a parking lot on the floor, we start to feel it itch in our fingers – so we, again, collect some pallets and flowers and a table. Now we are playing and observating at the same time, and start interacting with the people that in the meantime sat down in the neighbouring park. It feels very nice and natural, we drink a beer, start listening to a nice set of electronic music, the night is falling.
we leave all our parks behind. the second-to-last one, in front of the park, stayed for some days. I wonder who put them away – the city hall? an annoyed driver looking for a parking space? a neighbour?
things we noticed
it was a lot easier than we thought.
being in the park was a lot of fun. it gave an interesting way to interact with people outside of the park.
you become faster and faster in spotting and spawning a park, finding material for your park, arranging it and inhabiting it. it's nice to see that also this is something to learn and train.
Tibahni is an example for an authered city. For more information about the city of Tibahni, playing in it and becoming an inhabitant, visit tibahni.global