During last November, in seeking open city spaces for our new actions, we came up with an open space so central but in the same time, so neglected and derelict. The pedestrian walkway (part of Perikleous Str.), two blocks down from Syntagma Sq., had been left in a miserable state for years. Being a void and without identity, public space, remained defenceless to infinite garbage, lack of basic city care, terrible hygienic conditions, waif to motorcycle parking and poor public lighting.
Atenistas’s Green team decided to act and improve its appearance, give identity and some kind of public function. The aim was to create a place of interaction, pause, opportunity for meeting, for strengthening the local community, a place of surprise and a city landmark.
The walls were painted as a mural of a minimal urban skyline, which served as a backdrop to different kinds of pallet public benches configurations, consisting of recyclable materials (wooden pallets, old chairs and of course native plants and trees). Our artists gave “wings” to air conditioners in order to create a surreal and out of the ordinary feeling and an element of surprise. Placemaking at its best, a public void city space with no other function than being a passage and , during nights, a public WC, was transformed to an amazing, functional, urban place. It only took 3 weeks of design preparation and material gathering, 11 hours of hard work and 40 people dedicated to look at the bright side of life and of the city they live in.