Natural landscapes for an innovative playground in Brooklyn

The architecture and design studio Architensions looked to the natural world to create the setting for an indoor play area where children can move freely, manipulate and reinvent their surroundings.

The New York City architectural design studio Architensions was called upon by a Brooklyn-based wellness professional, an expert in yoga and childcare, to create the setting for a children’s play area that might encourage creative and free play.

Starting with avant-garde references from the last century such as Isamu Noguchi’s “Contoured Playground” or Aldo van Eyck’s series of Amsterdam landscapes, the duo of architects Alessandro Orsini and Nick Roseboro propose iconic forms and carefully chosen materials to recreate a natural setting, capable of stimulating children's imagination, cognitive development and body awareness in space.

A large, long, narrow room measuring 875 square metres, partly painted on the walls by a forest of trees, partly covered with an iridescent silvery fabric, alluding to water or the sky, has its floor covered with soft rubber, reminiscent of the ground of a forest covered in pine needles, while in the sky, large clouds from foam slats painted bright white, descend suspended in space.

Inside this natural box three plywood structures are located. A semicircular tunnel punctuated by geometric windows manipulates the topography by rising from the ground through a series of shallow steps, a green cylinder where children can climb up to observe the area through a net of green fabric simulates the idea of a tree house and finally a white, conical shape of semi-transparent washi paper hanging from the ceiling, allude to an igloo. Children can experience a particular light condition reminiscent of the glow of snow in the sun from the inside.

Children’s Playspace
Brooklyn, New York
Project team:
Alessandro Orsini, Nick Roseboro
875 sqm

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