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2011

San Jose State University

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Full-Text Articles in Urban Studies

Do-It‐Yourself Urban Design: Making Local Improvements Through Unauthorized Alterations Of Urban Space, Gordon Douglas Aug 2011

Do-It‐Yourself Urban Design: Making Local Improvements Through Unauthorized Alterations Of Urban Space, Gordon Douglas

Faculty Publications, Urban and Regional Planning

This study examines “spatial interventions”: street art, guerrilla gardening, public space invasions, and other unauthorized practices of place-based, site-specific art or activism that challenge the normative uses or meanings of particular urban spaces. In recent years, a growing number of individuals have taken up these forms of site-specific direct action. Some argue that they represent new strategies of political expression, even “resistance”; others, that it is little more than vandalism or pointless juvenile acting out. Yet my research suggests that many of these actions are rather connected by something more subtle, a simple willingness to reimagine the built environment on ...