Artefact Cards Blog

#Cardstock 3 - Cards In Spaaaaacccee...

Posted on February 28, 2020 by Cardstock Committee

And so it was, on a rainy Friday morning, Cardstock #3 took place in Pennethorpe’s Drawing Room in the west wing of Somerset House.

As we are just at the beginning of making this a ‘thing’ - yes, we’ve gone monthly - so the purpose of each session is emerging.

As such, it’s subject to change; however taking the core concept of being a place for ‘people who work with cards’ it feels like a place to talk in general about types of cards we have been using in our own practice, to share ideas on what we like (and dislike), and to focus on a specific practitioner or deck of cards.

Today’s meet-up began with the early arrivals, John, Simon and Scott trying to work out how to play Carbon City Zero, a game which John has backed on Kickstarter. Sadly, this was quickly abandoned due to confusing instructions. A game that has potential, but needs some input from its creators, perhaps.

Instead, as we were joined by four new Cardstock attendees, Scott unpacked his Space Futures Replenishment Kit cards which are designed to help organisations, individuals and teams with building possible future scenarios. In space.

Scott talked us through how they came into being, through his client work. We pulled out a selection of cards and created our own scenario with the group – everything from financial models for mining asteroids (already being legislated in Luxembourg) to the social technologies required to prepare us all for citizen space travel.

Discussions were also had around the fluidity of cards in a workshop environment (a common theme for every attendee of Cardstock so far!) and ways in which they could be fixed by putting them on a wall to constructing larger artefacts from multiple cards. John even has a mnemonic for this: horizontal for play, vertical for display.

Friend of Artefact Cards, Ian Sanders, talked about how he came to use cards in 2012, and how they have changed the way he runs his working practices. He brought along a deck of Improv Cards which he has been using in his recent work with BBC employees from across the organisation. This led us to discuss how what is written on cards appears to give people permission to say things, or address issues, they might feel uncomfortable doing without such a prompt. 

What is it that makes the words on cards so powerful in our collective consciousness - is it how we come to know them as instructions in childhood games, or something else? Something to ponder as we look towards the next Cardstock. 

Keep 27th March free and grab a ticket here.

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