One of the delightful aspects of sharing ideas is that others reciprocate in sharing. Today I received a YouTube link from a colleague that captured and encapsulated the essence of Johan Huizinga’s play elements of culture in Homo Ludens (1938).

The view we take in the following pages is that culture arises in the form of play, that it is played from the very beginning… Social life is endued with supra-biological forms, in the shape of play, which enhances its value.

On seeing the video my interests in music and performance coalesced around playing and playfulness. The video is from a project at the Odenplan station in Stockholm. (Much discussed earlier this month!) (Some Flickr Creative Commons’ images of Odenplan here.) Laurel Papworth’s has posted about this project and Fun Theory here.
Two other videos from the series, the Bottle bank Arcade and the World’s Deepest Bin can be found here.


    • Thanks for the comment, Laurel. Move to conscious play … Possibly because we have lost an innocence about play? I like the idea of situated play opportunities. Spontaneous moments when we find ourselves playing and recognise playfulness in others?

  1. Actually I was thinking of your quote – biological forms “play” but in an unconscious way. When we quest for a new job or push through boundaries in relationships we are playing – but a bit unconsciously. i.e. we take it seriously. Heh.
    I like the idea of conscious play. Maybe one day all jobs/careers and even chores like going to the supermarket will be entertaining and puzzles and have meaning rather than “grinds”. There are enough grind games around!


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