Simon introduces both himself and Laura to the group of participants. They are all sitting on a bench floating in the space. The usual tables and seats of the Mission’s education space have been pushed to the outskirts, leaving a large floor space.
Simon uses one of the computer screens in the space to present images and videos of what the design dup Freshwest is all about.
The participants are split into groups and launch into the first of three playful activities, Simon and Laura hand out uncooked spaghetti sticks and marshmallows, the idea for this activity is to build the tallest, most structurally sound tower, that is able to hold an egg at the top.
The groups start discussing different ways of tackling this and Simon and Laura connect with the them, spending time to direct and offer suggestions on their structures. The time passes really quickly as the group become engrossed in the task, and constructions start to rise from the table in the air.
As the towers get taller, all groups run into structural dilemmas where they have to discuss and negotiate ways of bracing and supporting them.
Time is called. One tower is slowly ‘melting’ down to ground level, another is contently holding an egg highly and the final tower is looking touch and go. Laura measures the structures and the vertical towers are then timed for ten seconds. During the ten seconds, a tower collapses leaving a clear winner.
The groups then reform into two groups and are guided by Simon and Laura into the next activity. They will build structures independently in different areas of the studio, which will eventually connect with one another. They are using 15mm doweling and ‘pink clips’ that have been specifically designed by Freshwest to enable the connection and building of these long and short dowel rods.
A large arch structure grows taking over the whole education space and reaches the ceiling.
After lunch, the students are given a demonstration on the spot welder machine. A machine that will quickly weld small bits of metal together safely by passing an electrical current through them. It operates much like a stamp or stapler.
Using small wire copper, the participants start to build and invent mini structures. The design goal of this activity is that the structure must hold a folder in a glass test tube.