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Recreation and Play


183. Experiments in Art and Technology, Los Angeles. E.A.T.-LA Survey. No. 5.jpg

Cover of a publication from E.A.T. Los Angeles

The “Recreation and Play” project was part of E.A.T.’s Projects Outside Art and was conceived and developed by the staff and artists at E.A.T. - Los Angeles. The project aimed to develop means of breaking away from the facility-bound concept of recreation in urban neighborhoods, and investigated the recreational potential of a wilderness area close to the city, and developed ideas on how visits there could be facilitated and encouraged.

A preliminary stage of the project would be to survey adults in a urban geographic location predominantly in­habited by persons under thirty years of age. These indivi­duals would be asked about their recreational habits within their urban environment. This information would then be coordinated with ideas to develop a rural recreational facility for this type of urban dweller.

​There were to be six roving recreation-leaders plus one administra­tor who would define what information was to be gathered, i.e. visuals, sounds, statistics, questions and answers. In essence these roving recreation leaders would serve as the nucleus of this study. Information gathering was to be done in the same manner as a suc­cessful experiment conducted in Santa Barbara: The information would be compiled in three forms:

  • Visual: film, cassette, video tape

  • Sound: real sounds of Owens Valley, short taped conversations and interviews

  • Graphic Interpretation: including a booklet to describe methods by which urban dwellers could orient themselves to rural recreation


The suggested display in Automation House would include a brief history of the project, including perhaps, the initial proposals submitted and subsequent ideas and the final pro­ject. Photographs, sound tapes, and written material; documentation of the initial experience at Santa Barbara with photos, movies, and sound tapes; an orientation pamphlet to Owens Valley including density maps, infrared photography, history, photo­graphs, along with the showing of video types of selected geographical locations in Owens Valley and Los Angeles.

​This information that was compiled would be distributed in three ways:


  • Home: an individual in his own environment would be advised of recreational locations and necessary facilities needed for transition

  • Mobile Campers: information could be played on car cassettes during the drive to the recreational areas

  • Audio-Visual Centers: demonstrations of potential recreation uses and providing orientation for people arriving to  the area

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