Pink Seesaws Promote Play and Goodwill Along US-Mexico Border Wall

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American and Mexican families play with a toy called "up and down" (Seesaw swing) over the Mexican border with US at the Anapra zone in Ciudad Juarez, Chihuahua State, Mexico on July 28, 2019. (Luis Torres/AFP/Getty Images)

Images and videos of children bouncing on pink seesaws on either side of the U.S.-Mexico border went viral across social media in late July. The seesaws, installed by Bay Area professors and architects Ronald Rael and Virginia San Fratello, spanned the border fence between Sunland Park, N.M. and Ciudad Juárez in Mexico, inviting families on both sides of the border to play together. Rael says that the seesaws promoted a "recognition that the actions that take place on one side have a direct consequence on the other side." Rael and San Fratello join Forum to talk about their inspiration for this project and their long-term collaboration reimagining the U.S.-Mexico border.


Ronald Rael, professor of Architecture, UC Berkeley

Virginia San Fratello, associate professor of Interior Design, San Jose State University