The Great Room / Rebar

Commissioned by ZERO1 and the San Jose Public Art Program, with support from the National Endowment for the Arts

Streetscapes are the largest component of the public realm of many cities, but the majority of that space is dedicated to moving and storing vehicles. At the same time, outdoor urban landscapes are often characterized by hard, sharp and uninviting surfaces. Rebar’s project for the ZERO1 biennial weekend in SoFA explores alternatives to the dominant paradigm by turning parking spaces into people places and inviting urban citizens to relax and play in a customized outdoor urban living room – The Great Room. Combined with the massive outdoor screen and the best SJ food trucks, The Great Room transforms a banal parking lot into a social living room for art, food and culture. Created from CNC-cut puzzle pieces and suspended fishing nets, The Great Room provides an absurd visual and tactile contrast to the typical urban hardscape and introduces features not often found in public space – large spaces suitable for swinging, eating, lounging and relaxing. Come play in The Great Room with Rebar!

On view in the 300 S. 1st street parking lot
September 13-15, 2012
Free and open to the public


live and work in San Francisco, CA

Artist website


Rebar is an interdisciplinary studio that creates artwork, structures, landscapes and experiences that energize the built environment and enhance the public realm. Our work is rooted in the belief that human interaction, community and a sense of wonder form the basis of the good life. We engage with large projects and small, from city and regional scale plans to objects that fit in the hand. We are a full service art studio and design firm operating a 5,000 SF workshop in the Mission District of San Francisco, offering concept design though construction documentation, prototyping, fabrication, and installation. We work around the country and around the globe, drawing upon a network of skilled collaborators to realize ambitious, innovative projects. Founded in 2004, Rebar has created work at venues and institutions around the globe, including the Venice Architecture Biennale, ISEA Dublin, ExperimentaDesign Amsterdam, SmartCity Paris, the Benaki Museum Athens, Urban Play Køge, Denmark, the Harvard GSD, U.C. Berkeley and the California College of the Arts and elsewhere.