I´m very proud to present my first post in English. Since I decided to write a article about Otis College of Art and Design travel study to Barcelona, I knew it must be written in the Shakespeare´s Language.

What a challenge!!
I apologize if at some point find my writing style somewhat naif.

On May 13th a group of sixteen students and two teachers landed at T-1, El Prat Airport, Barcelona. They came from Los Angeles, California. My job, to be their tour manager during their stay in the city.
Todd Erlandson and Sherry Hoffman were the tour leaders, the teachers and the “commanders” of a brilliant idea. During our first chat we were checking the weekly program, and I find out the veritable purpose of the trip. At that point I understood that it wasn’t to be a conventional vacation tour.

What was the difference?
In their own words: “The Travel Study, Barcelona program is a course within the Creative Action Initiative of the Integrated Learning Department at Otis College of Arts and Design, And will partner with a group called What is A?, a design collective engaged in arts education for children and youth in Barcelona, Spain.”

the students belonged to various design and architecture disciplines and they had fifteen days ahead to immerse in a incomparable city such as Barcelona. At the same time, several meeting were organized at painting and design studios. As well a series of collaborative and community experiences with children from “Escola de la Concepció”.
The goal: to create Vertical Gardens.

Barcelona was itself a source of inspiration. A walking tour was organized in order to learn more about the city, its original  urban design and modernist, industrial and avant-garde architecture.
A perfect moment to shoot a video of the group:

Girona was within the itinerary. A millenarian town founded by the Romans Before Christ’s birth. Located 100 km north of Barcelona, on the way to France.

We were very lucky!! During these days “Temps de Flors” was taking place in town. This “Flower Festival” has become an important event. Many official buildings and private courts open their doors for a week to show fanciful floral gardens. The students got lost in the narrow alleys of the Jewish Quarter searching for new ideas. Fantasy has no limits.

Vertical Garden at Temps de Flors, Girona.

Vertical Garden at Temps de Flors, Girona.

As we came to the end, there were many activities and meetings. Working hard in interdisciplinary teams, negotiating diverse public spheres. All together to reach the same aim.

Todd Erlandson wrote: ” on 24th May starting their final projects. Working with their IED student partners and La Concepció parents and children, it was a hectic day of acquiring final needed materials. Assembling installations and planting. With a short break, all was completed by 4:00pm. Congratulations to all involved!!

After this experience I’ve learned, Travel Study is an amazing experience where we put together traveling, tourism, knowledge, social integration, skill development and collaborative projects.

I may say, Thank you for letting me be part of it. I look forward to next year’s trip.
Special thanks to Ole Spain Tours, the spanish tour operator. The logistic was perfect!!

Here a a slideshow of the final project:

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