The Climbing Towers of Florian Aigner


I’ve been thinking about the climbing frames of Florian Aigner, too, which are a sort of distortion of the tidy traditional boxes below.  At London for Play I talked about the idea of ‘feel risky play safe’, in which the impression of risk is created on the playground even though all pertinent safety standards are covered.  A key way to do this is with tilted surfaces.

Aigner makes climbers that look like they’re going to fall down.  And therein lies the excitement; the sense of daring in the climbing.

Like Helle Nebelong, Florian maintains that excessively ‘safe’ playgrounds are actually more dangerous, because they lead to inattentiveness:  “Once the child thinks “I can do it all,  I don’t need to pay attention’, he becomes careless.”  In Alger’s playgrounds, though “there are simply no flat surfaces…only stumbling blocks….the children must always be careful and that’s why nothing will happen.”

Aigner works only in oak set into steel tubes at the ground.  He eschews traditional bright playground colors so that his climbers ‘disappear’, enhancing the child’s feeling of discovering the space.

Ooh, that’s a new learning for me.  I hadn’t thought before about how static, how rigid the lines of a brightly colored playground are, and how that could potentially make the spaces feel so contrived and obvious.

Most of the references to Aigner’s work are in German, so I had difficulty finding the locations of his climbers, though apparently there are many scattered about the world.   If you know the location of an Aigner climbing tower (or if you have better photos than these low res ones), get in touch!

One Response to “The Climbing Towers of Florian Aigner”

  1. Untersbergstraße Playground, Munich Germany | Playscapes said:

    […] friend Lianne sent through this climbing thicket in Munich German as a follow-on to the Florian Aigner post;  she says it is at  the intersection of Untersbergstraße & Weißenseestraße in Munich.  […]

    April 16, 2013 at 1:00 pm

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