About the Showcase

The Recife: The Playable City Showcase was a celebratory event that explored how culture, technology and play, can shape the future of our cities. It took place on 11th and 12th April in Recife. It was free to attend, open to all and offered talks, workshops, exhibits and interventions in public space.

The Showcase celebrated the work and debate that emerged from a cultural exchange between the cities of Bristol in the UK, and Recife in Brazil.

Between January and April 2014, a cohort of British and Brazilian artists, producers and technologists, spent time in each place, considering what a Playable City could be. Supported by partners Watershed, Porto Digital and the British Council, they explored ideas and worked together to develop new, playable products and experiences for Recife. The Showcase was an opportunity to experience the playful interventions they created, and hear thoughts from a range of fantastic speakers.

The Playable City is a term coined in Bristol, as a counterpoint to ‘A Smart City’. It is imagined as a place where people, hospitality and openness are key, and where residents and visitors can reconfigure and rewrite the city’s services, places and stories. This Showcase transformed Recife into the world’s second Playable City, a place where citizens have a voice and where there was permission to be playful in public.

Recife: The Playable City is a Watershed programme, delivered in collaboration with the British Council and Porto Digital as part of the British Council’s Creative Economy programme and UK/Brazil initiative Transform.

The programme was made possible with support from Arts Council England, the Government of Pernambuco Estate and the Government of the City of Recife, and was coordinated in Brazil by Fina Produção.