Figment Boston 2015

We needed a Figment Boston fix!  Last year we took the train to the city, and the skies opened up.  We got in exactly one round of garden gnome mini-golf before the festival shut down early due to inclement weather.

For this weekend’s festival, the skies were also quite overcast on the way in, but it stayed dry enough to make the most of the festivities all weekend.  Plus, while we’ve been lucky enough to be able to spend half the summer camping, weekends home have been tied up with various obligations and home repair–part of the reason updates have been slow in coming.  It was nice and relaxing to do something purely fun in our own area!

To read more about the history and the mission behind the Figment art festival click here to read our last post on the subject.  Meanwhile, on to the fun stuff:

The installation below is called the Collabyrinth.  Participants attempt to move the ball through the maze by stepping on panels.  All the displays are creative and interactive, but it is not a requirement that they be Boston-themed.  People seem to get a kick out of it when they are, though.



The contraption below is called Mobius Chess.  I’m not going to lie.  I’m a pretty high energy person who does not usually have the focus to sit down and play strategic games.  But a glowing 3-D chess game on a dance floor?  I might be tempted to give it a try!  Add in the commentary (intended or not) that this “game of life” goes on indefinitely, and they’ve got a neat concept here.


Mobius Chess

Next up was Look to Start.  Someone had artistically embedded simple words in homemade bricks, and the concept was basically the same as magnetic poetry. My 6-year-old is a beginning reader, and she was thrilled she could make out all the words.  She then proceeded to spell out “My but but” and giggle but others came up with more profound messages.

Look To Start

Look To Start

This is Sprite’s Delight.  They are leaping water fountains.  They were like a poor man’s version of the Imagination Fountains at Epcot, but the low budget aspect did not faze any of the kids (or adults).  Everyone was entranced, wanting to chase the droplets.

Sprite's Delight

Sprite’s Delight

The installation below is called Place:  Suspended.  There was a little green platform with train set props and little toys. Participants could design their own park, and then it’d be sent up on an anchored balloon periodically.  This was a big hit!  The kids play with their doll house only sporadically but I suspect this could have kept them occupied all day–perhaps because they love nature themes. Plus, we love anything related to park rebuilds here at Playground Hunt.


This one is called Color Drops.  “Nest Rests” are becoming more and more trendy.  Nearly everyone I talk to would love one for their yard, and it’d be fun to see more in urban spaces, as well.

Color Drops

Color Drops

For Exquisite Creature, they had a frame where you could cover up two thirds of the paper, and participants took turns drawing a head, a body, or feet without knowing what their teammates created.  Many whimsical and hilarious drawings emerged.  This could be easily adapted at home.  I will definitely keep it up my sleeve for rainy days.  Click to enlarge to get a better look at the crazy critters (both the drawings and my spawn).

Exquisite Creature

Exquisite Creature

This is just a small sampling of what was there! In addition to the art booths, there were many performances. There was the “Happily Booth” performance art space, many dance shows, and a bubble wrap dance floor combined with a bubble blowing station.


Bridget looks like she has the weight of the world on her shoulders, but in truth her mood was lighter than ever!

We always have a wonderful time at Figment!  If I had a question or criticism it would be about the fact there were a good handful of booths sitting empty.  In the past, we’d only been able to make it on Sunday so we weren’t sure if a lot of people just don’t make it the second day.  But this year we made it on a busy Saturday and it was the same.  They may have drop-outs, or some artists may only come at night.  We haven’t tried that yet!  I heard it turns into a whole different place, and many of the installations are built to incorporate light or glow-sticks.  I’m not sure if it is as kid-friendly then, but we hope to experience it one day.  Either way, an explanation for the obvious gaps would be nice, but there is still PLENTY to see, so they cause more curiousity than disappointment.

In addition to the Figment sponsored art, it is a good time to go check out the Greenway Conservancy Public Art Program installations, from Janet Echelman’s As If It Were Already Here, and beyond.

As always, Playground Hunt is excited to take part in events that combine green space, community, and art, and we look forward to next year, as well as some of the other events and festivals our creative city is known for.



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