Richard collaborates with artists, technologists, serious games developers, architects, planners, communities and audiences to make engaging and impactful experiences in the public realm designed to inform decision-making in urban design programmes and in policy. These experiences make temporary changes to the managed environment, urban and rural, to challenge understandings and expectations about what we can do and what we can affect in local neighbourhoods and gathering places. They aspire to effect permanent change in how we think about living together.
Richard works across the cultural, heritage, urban planning and land management sectors.
Richard is interested in:
what we learn about ourselves, our world and the environment around us through playful encounters in the public sphere;
physical world experiences where people work/play together in endeavours that make a difference to the individuals coming together and those around them;
how we inhabit the virtual and physical worlds simultaneously - a transreality - and yet are still working out the implications of this;
what it means when we can no longer access or engage with the physical world without a virtual overlay - and what this means for being human;
and how we use this to look afresh at natural and managed environments; and how we understand and inhabit with them.
In addition to collaborative projects, Richard is researching the process of co-creating tactical interventions as a means to secure or maintain agency in relation to place-shaping, urban design and policy processes. He has a workspace at East Gate Studios, part of Gatehouse Arts in Harlow, UK. He is a Fellow of the RSA: Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce and a member of:
the UK’s Urban Design Group, a membership charity open to all who care about the quality of life in our cities, towns and villages and believe that raising standards of urban design is central to its improvement (student member).
The Academy of Urbanism, a politically independent, not-for-profit organisation that brings together both the current and next generation of urban leaders, thinkers and practitioners
IETM, the global network for contemporary theatre practice
ACAVA (Association for Cultural Advancement through Visual Art UK)
and of Axisweb.
"a force of energy who brings visionary creative ideas to cultural projects with a high degree of professionalism, commitment and integrity..."
"...injects equal amounts of creativity, challenge, fun and pragmatism..."
"...a brilliantly connected ideas man, who applies rigorous and knowledgeable planning..."
image © Richard Sobey 2015 content: © Richard Sobey 2018 all rights reserved last updated October 2018