A stage, a film set, a story, a character, or a path… For all this we only need a pallet and lots of imagination! Pallet Casting is a participative tool based on a semi structured script with premises that question the participants about their physical and emotional relation with the place they live in, producing varied material such as video, audio, dance, and short stories about the neighborhood.
Pallet Casting always offers new possibilities according to the context and the issues we intend to approach. The only condition for it to happen is to have a pallet as stage. From there, we can let the scenery and the script form.
We started using this strategy in Vale de Chelas (former Curraleira) and later during the commemorations of the Marvila City Day. We also implemented the Pallet Casting during the Performapping project and its exhibition.
Apart from its high efficiency in collecting information, creating proximity, and its ludic application, Pallet Casting expands Frame Colectivo’s identity, since we use pallets as material for many of our construction projects due to its mobile characteristics.
In the beginning of 2015, the campaign Vai Rebentar consisted in distributing bags with Seedbomb to be spread around the city. Each bag also had the recipe and user instructions. Seedbombs are balls of earth with seeds, ready to be planted anywhere. The interventionist gesture of throwing a Seedbomb to embellish the city produces the beginning of the sensation of power to decide and to create change. A simple and minor surgery as consciousness raiser.
The first competition, CAPAFACA, emerged in the context of the project Para Lá do Muro. With the theme “Photographic record of Lisbon’s Health Park,” the contest intended to incorporate the park of the Júlio de Matos Hospital in the neighborhood of Alvalade, stimulating a closer connection to the community. The participants had the opportunity to enter a space unknown to them, exploring it in different ways and creating new perspectives and relations to the site.
These interactive and collection walks allow us to further our knowledge of the neighborhoods where we develop interventions. This empirical tool is fundamental to experience the neighborhood at a human level and be able to compare the projected spatial organization with the way it is actually lived by its inhabitants, gathering the positive and negative aspects. Understanding the existing issues is the starting point for the subsequent creation of proposals for public space and the collaboration with local groups and organizations, as well as for the communication about our work to the participants.
Translucid Stencil Tiles
One of the research themes in 2014 focused on the cultural heritage of traditional Portuguese tile-patterns. The project Translucid Stencil Tiles resulted from a knowledge exchange with Maria Caetano from “Lugar da Cerâmica.” She shared the methodology behind the creation of traditional tiles, which then resulted in a series of patterns cut in acrylic sheets at FABLAB Lisboa.
408 Ice-Cream Shop
The 408 Ice-Cream Shop, a small shop with homemade organic yogurt ice cream and toppings, is installed inside the old-time fire truck. This tool of self-sustainability also becomes our meeting point in patios and squares, functioning as a unifying element of the intervention spaces network.
Looking for the perfect platform to assist the projects by Frame Colectivo, the three conditions were mobility, multifunctionality, and memorability. The best available option, and the one we immediately fell in love with, was an old-time fire truck Mercedes 408 from 1975, which we now use as multifunctional and adaptable intervention platform. Not only does it facilitate the direct contact with the public, but it also works as mobile broadcasting system, easily adjustable to any project.
This urban research tool helps us understand how the city is lived, seen, and inhabited by its citizens. It is a participative exercise that produces and questions maps, simultaneously allowing a close contact with the participants and their neighborhood.