Bringing meaning to place

Connecting communities with wayfinding, narratives and graphic artworks

A talk by Richard Wolfströme

How do you connect people to a place?
How do you give people a sense of ownership of their environment?
How do you reveal a place to be rich in meaning and potential?
How do you get a sense of where you are and where you are going?

Making better places to live, work and play is about discovering ways to express context, meaning and function. Places that are loved and enjoyed are places that thrive. For communities and visitors to enjoy these spaces, they need to feel a connection.

Places should inspire and promote a sense of community. The physical setting is only one starting point; place-making is about understanding what kind of activities a place supports, about expressing the character of a place and about nurturing a lasting sense of attachment in those who use the location. Understanding a place’s potential goes hand in hand with finding the right way to communicate it.

Key to making a town legible, interpreting the heritage of a landmark or expressing the culture of a corporation is finding the right language – verbal and visual. What’s the right form of communication for that particular place and its ambitions? An open, welcoming discourse helps people to feel part of a community. If we get that right, we can make a better place.

Using project examples, Richard will demonstrate how he engages with stake-holders and communities, using their narratives, to bring meaning to place and giving the community a joint sense of ownership'.

Richard Wolfströme is an award-winning creative, with over 25 years’ experience, having graduated from the much respected Ravensbourne College of Design & Communication in 1987).

One of his specialisms (and passions) is in the art of place-making, where he explores and works with communities to engage and bring meaning to place through wayfinding, embedded artworks and typographic narratives – installed into the landscape itself and supported by the use of augmented reality and digital applications.

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