Future Perfect challenged the artists, filmmakers, and gamers of Indie Grits to explore how art and technology will help shape the southern city of the future. While this no doubt resulted in some fascinating work, we wanted to push this concept a step further by encouraging these creative minds to use Columbia as a medium for this experiment. To accomplish this, Indie Grits will partner with the folks at the Urban Land Insitute of South Carolina for a symposium and workshop during this year’s Festival.
The symposium–held the morning of Thursday, April 16–featured a keynote address by Burt Crenca, founder and artistic director of Providence, RI’s AS220, and a panel of experts discussing the role of contemporary urban design in economic development. That afternoon, putting a bit of an Indie Grits spin on things, we paired groups of ULI experts, planners, and developers with visiting artists, filmmakers, and gamers. Together they discussed some of the challenges we see here in downtown Columbia–like how to make Assembly Street pedestrian friendly, how the development of the river will shape our city’s future, and how we can better connect different centers of activity for cyclists and pedestrians. That evening at Tapp’s, the groups then shared their ideas–from the practical to the fantastical.