art,  design,  playground

The art of broom and rust

This proposal comes from the need to address, on one hand, an anticipated maintenance concern around the sand spilling onto the concrete patio, and, on the other hand, the desire to bring an art piece into the playground.
It wonders, how might [care-play-full] bringing together of art and the instruments of upkeep help children and educators to labour together on the practice of [maintenance as] care?

The proposed piece includes a metal panel (possibly sources at a shipyard in Sarnia?) with a complex welded pattern developed by Owen of Burn Island, a sculptor working in Peterborough, Ontario. The panel will be outfitted with multiple slots that could house rakes and brooms.

Great care should be put into both selecting and storing brooms (which should be brought up every morning and put away nightly). Often, brooms are seen thrown about in school and ECE centre playgrounds: items of care treated without any care. Instead, educators and children could develop routines and practices of how brooms should be treated, opening up a path to explore a question of how might we practice the pedagogy of [maintenance as] care?  

Figures & References:

Artwork by Owen, Sculptor, Burn Island; online:

Exhibition by Furnishing Utopia Collective; online:

Broomcorn being grown for brooms in the village of Kunohe, Japan by Nanbuhouki; online:

Black ash brooms by Hannah Beatrice Quinn; online

Rainbow broom by Cynthia Main and Doug Stubbs; online:

Handmade Shaker-style flat broom by Erin Rouse; online: