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Questioning various notions of play, and an exploration into the everyday were the main points of departure for this project, devised and led by artist Matthew Krishanu in collaboration with St Stephen’s and Ethelred Children’s Centres.

Working in situ in local Sure Start early years centres Krishanu devised various interventions, interruptions and reconfigurations to encourage a re-examination of everyday spaces, objects and materials. The project invited parents, Children’s Centre staff and children to re-imagine the familiar, and take part in a shared exploration of newly imagined and co-created terrains, situations and forms of free play.

These shared explorations included transposing large quantities of snow into interior play spaces, reconfiguring indoor spaces into outside terrains, reimaging the idea of a collective picnic and embracing, and being at ease with, various forms of make believe and messiness. By facilitating sessions that magnified the role that interruptions into the familiar can encourage, Play in the everyday sought to make visible the numerous opportunities that exist to playfully explore everyday routines, habits, tasks and environments.

Play in the Everyday builds upon a long running collaboration between Gasworks and a small group of local Children’s Centres that seeks to provide a platform for Gasworks to meet and work with local families, and explore the atmosphere, context, rhythms and structure of the local Sure Start landscape. In the coming months Gasworks, Krishanu and St Stephen’s Children Centre will develop the research phase of a Family in Residence programme where Krishanu and his family will be in residence at the centre.

It is about the way that children engage with a place, not as landscape, not as something to see, never as a whole frame, but always through moving, breaking, building, transforming materials and structures.” Beatriz Santiago Muñoz in reference to her film The Black Cave (2013) on display at Gasworks during this project.