Find out who these buildings really were…

It is 1979, and developers are beginning to encroach on the territory of DUMBO. The local artist community have called in the help of the Ex-Site Department to help save their rich neighborhood from the incoming real estate moguls. Each building needs a strong case to preserve it from re-development.

The Ex-Site Department is using this opportunity to test out some of its new recruits. To compete, Ex-Site detectives are armed with “chrono-torches” that will reveal clues about the history of the site. The more clues they find, the stronger their argument for preservation. The detectives that manage to save the most buildings will be taken under the wing of the department.

Designers – Adelle Lin and Alex Garkavenko

The Ex-Site Department is a playful concept created by Adelle and Alex that uses physical games and other immersive experiences to promote the discovery of architecture and urban space. With the broader objective of raising public curiosity in the built environment, the games explore quirks and underlying narratives of existing spaces to engage a broad range of audiences. As an alternative to static exhibitions or guided walking tours, organic discovery become tools to ignite passion about the spaces around us.

Adelle is a practicing designer in the field of architecture and interiors interested in creating spatial interactions that incorporate games and play. Adelle joined the Games and Experimental Entertainment Lab (GEElab) in Melbourne in early 2013, designing games for events as well as project clients. A regular game runner for Pop-up Playground in Melbourne, she was also an associate producer for the Freeplay Independent Games Festival in 2013, curating the festival’s games arcade. Having just recently moved to New York, one of her games — Word of Mouth — was invited to be part of the Different Games Arcade in 2014. She continues on with urban adventures, exploring methods of integrating digital elements and physical spaces in playful ways.

Alex is a futurist in hiding. Her curiosity is fueled by exploring new modes of interaction between people, their spatial environments and the digital realm (which, let’s be honest, is still a bit of a third wheel). Manifestations revolve around architecture, with a portfolio of both built and conceptual designs and well as writing for publications like Architizer, Metropolis and Wallpaper*. Currently pushing her work more towards the digital, Alex has recently been focussing on programming – a bunch of coding experiments are on their way (stayed tuned!).