Activating Play-Based Escape, Awakening Creativity
Keichinger, Sabrina Deanne
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Everyone participates in escape. The drive to escape is something we are born with. It is a force that has ties to our curiosity, as well as our profound psychological restlessness, and can even be seen in our displeasure with boredom. This thesis introduces three forms of escape: pure diversions, games, and play. Focussing on a play-based escape, this thesis argues that this is the most important form of escape, because, through play, we promote our cognitive health and creativity. This thesis develops three lines of investigation: first an understanding of what play is; second, through understanding the conditions, context, and disposition necessary in order to engage in a play-based escape; and third, a study of play through the review of architectural case studies. It is through these investigations that this thesis will identify ten key strategies that architecturally accommodate play. These are: nature, complexity, dynamic, loose-parts theory, scale, the primitive, along a path, mystery, risk, and unmonitored feel. In order to develop a method of design which engenders an architectural atmosphere of play-based escape these characteristics are organized into three interconnected themes: a desire to explore the world around us, a desire for a dynamic stimulating environment, and the desire to be active and move our bodies. Finally, an architectural application of the design method concludes this thesis, with hopes to activate a play-based escape capable of awakening our creativity.