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2013 08 22-25: vIEČIŪNAI - The diary of travelling architecture workshop | 16

SEP 2013

The place can be called space only when a man appears in it. Understanding a space as a container for accommodating people and objects instead let’s think of it as water ripples around movement, caused by impatient people bodies, looks, ideas. Movement and action is a necessary condition for the emergence of space.

To the last stop of this summer or Viečiūnus (from the word “local”) Traveling Architecture Workshop van arrived on August 22. The volunteers were joyfully greeted by the local coordinator Jolita and accommodated in a new town community center. The local children squad was already waiting there. 


According the tradition the project’s star-shaped tent was built - the sign of a symbolic space for creativity, dialogue, meeting, exchanging ideas and experiences.

The actual acquaintance with workshop participants and was during their guided tour through the village. The volunteers with children visited Kašalynas pond braided with horror stories,  stones, barracks, school area with newly fresh playgrounds, abandoned water treatment plant and swings. Finally a tour led to an impressive space called “the stairs” by the children, surprising its size and urban character. It an unfinished stadium started building during the Soviet period and never completed. The amphitheater type giant stairs and playground was made of concrete blocks.




After returning from a tour of the town and drawing the map, a lot of discussion was necessary: the children together decided that the most appropriate space for new ideas was “the stairs”. Instantly a lot of proposals were made to resurrect the stadium to new life: cleaning from the trash, removing the grass and making a skate park. A happy coincidence was that one of the volunteers was a skater Adomas with a lot of experience of designing skate ramps.



While some proposals were designed at the same time the playground was scraped, raked, swept, cleaned. The next day intensive construction works started with wood pallets, plywood sheets, planks and other materials. Other took care of the painting on the stairs: VCN Cool (meaning Viečiūnai is cool). At the top of the amphitheater a new wooden observation deck was made, which offered outstanding views of the action in the playground. From the first moments a former abandonment stadium received a community attention: there was no shortage of those who were watching, asking and involved.




So within three days a new urban attraction center in the town center emerged: a place youth inviting for dynamic lifestyle and marked with urban concrete character and monumental inscriptions. The special arrangement of the stadium insulates it from car traffic and protects the local population from the potential noise coming from it.




Although improvised, the closing event was impressive: 10-year-old Skirmantas led tour of the stadium; the speakers were playing rap music, accompanied by shouts of surprise for skaters skate performance.

Before the arrival of the volunteers Viečiūnai has enjoyed mowed lawns, paved paths, game courts and playgrounds. However, during those three days there was constructed something what the young people of the town were lacking - is a social contact area for meeting smaller and bigger, a place to watch, to play and to rest.




P. S. The rumors say that the popularity of “the stairs” only increases.



Viečiūnai (Druskininkai district)

August 22-25, 2013


RESULT: resurrected to life unfinished to build the stadium space: the paving renewed and cleaned from the grass- now it is suitable for skateboarders and skaters; a monumental inscription “VCN Cool” was painted on the amphitheater stairs; a watching platform constructed from wood.  The space was filled with urban furniture (table-climbing facilities) and ramps for skate-park: 4 ramps (kicker, box circuit, fun box, bank) created, concrete blocks painted to make the rest area.

VOLUNTEERS TEAM: Aurelija Šlapikaitė - Jurkonė(curator), Karina Lazauskaitė, Paulina Lisevičiūtė, Goda Palekaitė, Adomas Palekas, Sigita Simona Paplauskaitė, Ema Šilauskaitė, Sandra Šlepikaitė, Audrius Žalneravičius.

WORKSHOP PARTICIPANTS: Arnas Audrius Aurimas Deividas, Denas, Dorotėja, Edgaras, Eimantas, Eimantas, Emilija, Gytis, Greta, Gvidas, Ineta, Iveta, Kęstas, Kipras, Kornelijus, Lukas, Lukas, Martynas, Roberta, Rokas, Saidas , Samanta, Skirmantas, Soteras, Žygis.



Text by - Goda Palekaite.


Pictures - Aurelija Šlapikaitė – Jurkonė.


Travelling Architecture Workshop - the first large-scale project by Architecture [Children] Fund, which took place in 2013 during the summer holidays. It aims to draw children and village residents attention to the everyday human environment. The project seeks to demonstrate that to take care of the public environment and to foster real changes could be done without a lot of material and human resources.




Architecture [Children] Fund is a volunteering based initiative that develops and implements educational programs for children and youth about architecture and living environment.