Mobile A2K

Culture and Safety in Africa

Park Signage and Childrens Play Are

Name of Artwork
Park Signage and Childrens Play Are

Location and Accessibility
In each of the HBY parks: JL De Villiers Park (cnr Doris and Joe Slovo), Donald Mackay Park (cnr Abel and Joe Slovo), Alec Gorshel Park (cnr Fife and Joel), Le Roith Park (cnr Clarendon Place and Edith Cavell) and Pieter Roos Park (cnr Empire and Victoria). Caution should be exercised in the parks around Hillbrow, Berea and Yeoville.

Level of Significance
Significant Individual Artworks (series)

About the Artwork
The play areas and associated signage were developed out of an extended process of engagement with the specific environment of each park on the part of Brenden Gray (a visual artist) and Mpho Molikeng (a performing artist). The two artists would arrive at the parks with a carful of creative materials and a smalls sound system, and engage local children in creative activities, dances and games. Through this process of engagement, the two became familiar with the context and it was on the basis of this that Gray designed the creative play areas which were then translated into the Master Fibre cutouts that can be found in the play areas of each park. Master Fibre is a durable matting material made from recycled car tyres. The designs on the one hand draw on the experience of the children who use the parks, and on the other are designed to be viewed from the buildings around the parks.

Based on this experience, Gray then developed signage boards for the play areas for each park, drawing on the experience of having conducted the workshops. These were then printed on vinyl and mounted on steel chromadek boards positioned at children’s eye-level. In addition to this signage, Le Roith park features a mosaic designed by Ilse Pahl commemorating the architect after whom the park is named, Harold Le Roith. The round mosaic set into the ground makes reference in its fusion of organic and inorganic elements to the modernist vision that informed Le Roith, who was responsible for many of the apartment buildings across the HBY area.