Creators say they hope the work encourages people to build bridges between communities. Lanre Bakare, in the Guardian. January 2021.
A collection of bright pink seesaws that allowed people to interact over the US-Mexico border has won the prestigious Design of the Year award, with its creators saying they hoped the work encourages people to build bridges between communities.
The Teeter Totter Wall, which bridged across El Paso in Texas and Ciudad Juárez in Mexico during a 40-minute session, was described as not only feeling “symbolically important” but also highlighting “the possibility of things” by the judging panel.
The creators of the seesaws, Ronald Rael, a professor of architecture at the University of California, Berkeley, and Virginia San Fratello, an associate professor of design at San José State University, first came up with the idea a decade ago after the Secure Fence Act 2006, which started large-scale building on the border.
They said they hoped the design would help people reassess the effectiveness of borders and encourage dialogue rather than division. San Fratello said: “I think it’s become increasingly clear with the recent events in our country that we don’t need to build walls we need to build bridges.”