Brick Arches roadblocks from Hong Kong protests resonate as "anyone can replicate" - architecture and design

Brick Arches roadblocks from Hong Kong protests resonate as "anyone can replicate"



Makeshift roadblocks from Hong Kong's pro-democracy protests won the People's Choice category at the Designs of the Year awards because they could be made by anyone anywhere, says Design Museum curator Maria McLintock.
Dubbed Brick Arches, the roadblocks are ordinary bricks stacked ankle-high in clusters of three, set up on roads to stop vehicles moving forward.
When struck by a wheel, the top brick falls away and the remaining two bricks form a buttress that prevents the wheel from moving.
The design won the People's Choice category at the Design Museum's annual Designs of the Year awards.
"I think one of the reasons that the brick arches struck such a chord with the public was that their designed simplicity starkly contrasted with the complexity of the surrounding political moment," said co-curator of Designs of the Year 2020 Maria McLintock. Makeshift roadblocks were used during the Hong Kong pro-democracy protests
Despite their small size, the protesters' makeshift roadblocks have also been visually compared to Paris' Arc de Triomphe or England's Stonehenge.
"For such little structures to conjure metaphors of grand architectural monuments, there must be a powerful message at play here," continued McLintock.
The makeshift roadblocks gained global media attention for their simple but highly effective design as activists used them to shut down roads during demonstrations over the past two years.

The Brick Arches' originator is unknown, but the simplici...
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