His project delt with three distinct areas of design/communication: Landscape Architecture, Graphic Design and Linguistics. The entire project was about saving the historic district of Chavis Park and surrounding areas of Southeastern Raleigh. Chavis park is a historic African American park that came together because of Shaw University and St. Agustin. The main class of people that lived there was the African American middle class.
While taking all of this into consideration, each group thought a lot about how they would individually work but also how they could come together and cooperate as a whole. Robin Dodsworth concentrated on the Linguistics of the greater Raleigh area and how different parts spoke differently. Kermit Bailey concentrated on the Graphic design because he had a materialistic advantage. He looked at advertisements from different time periods to show change and tell the story of Raleigh. Finally, the Landscape Architect, Kofie Boone, looked at the land as a whole but also used cell phone diaries to mark where the videos were taken and upload videos to a blog. He claimed that voice had more of an authenticity than the actual visual representation because most of what the residents were remembering was no longer there physically. These three areas offered three different scales of research: Looking at the park, looking at Raleigh and then looking at the Park, district and project as a whole.
Some of the questions that came up throughout the project was: What the Identity of the park and surrounding area? What are the differences between what it was back in history verses what the area looks like now. What was life like for those that knew Chavis Park? How do we preserve history and make it contemporary relevant?
Some of these questions were answered through the video recordings, recounting peoples memories while others were just observations. The population of Southeast Raleigh has switched from a predominate African American society to a mix of African Americans, Spanish and white works.
He offered 4 main points at the end to help describe design ( although I was only able to copy down three of the 4):
1. How might a contemporary design research and practice agenda leverage multiple disciplines in addressing systematic community based problems?
- Design research helps keep us from reinventing the wheel
2."Narriatives do not tell their own stories. They are meditated"
3. How designers see the world through other people's eyes and get them to tell their story
It was interesting to listen to what Kermit had to say because he and his group took this project to somewhere that most people would not. Each group had a different view on Chavis park, but together it created a complete picture of what it use to be like and what it is now to help preserve its history while still being contemporary.