Doxa Orange right arrow UQAM Design International 2011

Rebar was invited by Professor Anne-Marie Broudehoux to spend the week in Montreal to take part in University of Quebec’s Design International 2011 event.

The event brought together designers, researchers and practitioners of international repute working in different fields to host a series of intensive workshops that allowed students to identify problems and explore themes shaping both conventional and alternative practices.

The week began on Saturday with presentations from conference guests Ginette Caron, Hans Vrijmoed , Juhani Pallasmaa , Paul Cox , Tim McDonald ,  Tomasz Walenta, and John Bela of Rebar.


During the following week, each guest worked with up to 25 students each in an intensive workshop, leading up to a final presentation at the UQAM design school.


Rebar’s workshop, led by John Bela and Masha Slavnova, was to construct a public space house party in 96 hours to be deployed at three sites in Montreal using bicycles. The goals of the workshop were to:

  • Activate a set of underutilized public spaces in Montreal
  • Explore boundaries of public and private in the public realm
  • Explore social codes that govern behavior in public space
  • Create an invitation for urban inhabitants to play and party with us
  • Give ourselves and those around us permission to be playful, kind, and generous
We began by asking some fundamental questions:
  • What are the essential elements of a house party?
  • What materials and fabrication processes lend themselves to a temporary installation deployed by bicycle?
  • What is the role of sound, light, graphics, surfaces, enclosures in creating and defining space?

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The public space is transformed into a festive indoor environment (public space house party). A temporary facility will be deployed by bicycles.
The workshop group, led by John Bela of Rebar and Masha Slavnov, will create and construct a movable feast in 96 hours and deployed at three sites in Montreal using bicycles.
The aim of the workshop is to activate a set of underutilized spaces in Montreal, to explore the boundary between public and private sectors in the public domain, to discover the social codes governing behavior in public space , create an invitation for urban dwellers to play and have fun with them, give and give to those around us permission to be playful, kind and generous.

After brainstorming together to develop design concepts, students broke into teams focused on structure, ground plane, social furniture, lighting and sound.



After a week of rain, on Friday morning the sky cleared and sun illuminated the city streets.  We rapidly assembled the elements of our mobile installation and hit the streets.

We installed at three sites over the course of the day and evening, using the intervention to explore the social codes governing behavior in different neighborhoods of the city.

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After a few day time installations, we returned to the school to recuperate and prepare for a night mission.  At dusk, we launched our armada and headed to the Village where we set up our final installation and witnessed the ingenious work of our lighting team which created a beautiful nighttime spectacle that drew in young and old residents to dance with us.

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REBAR+UQAM_2011 from OLI on Vimeo.

Design International 2011 was a great experience and great success. We are thankful to Anne-Marie for the invitation to participate, to our passionate and energetic students, and to our colleagues in the workshop whom together created some novel and compelling work.

Written by Rebar

May 9th, 2011 at 5:01 pm

Posted in Announcements