Parkcycle Swarm by Rebar Group and N55

Here are more public spaces on the back of bikes: a swarm of tiny mobile parks covered in grass are being pedalled around the city of Baku this month (+ slideshow).

Parkcycle Swam

Designed by John Bela of design firm Rebar Group and Till Wolfer of Scandinavian collective N55, the Parkcycle Swarm project consists of four pedal-powered miniature parks.

Each one has a bike in the centre and is surrounded by a rectangular metal frame with a grassy surface. One of the parks has a tree attached to the frame and another folds up like a sun lounger.

They can be cycled to a chosen location and installed for public use. Visitors to the micro-green spaces are encouraged to take a break, have some lunch, relax and sunbathe.

Parkcycle Swam

The project intends to highlight new possibilities of public installations and to raise awareness of cycling, community participation and the value of green space, according to the designers.

Parkcycle Swam

Parkcycle Swarm will be traveling around the Azerbaijan capital city as part of arts organisation Yarat's Public Arts Festival called PARTICIPATE this month.

Parkcycle Swam

Another new addition to the city of Baku is Zaha Hadid's Heydar Aliyev Centre.

Other mobile architecture featured recently include a portable town square on a pedal bikea tiny mobile stage that is based on sixteenth century market stalls and Roman fortune tellers and a quilted cube attached to the back of a tricycle.

See more mobile architecture »

Here's a project description from Yarat:

Parkcycle Swarm, by Rebar Group and N55

A joint project by N55 and Rebar Group, Parkcycle Swarm has landed for August-September 2013 at PARTICIPATE: Baku Public Art Festival 2013, produced by YARAT.

Parkcycle Swarm

YARAT’s founder comments, "Parkcycle Swarm is a brilliant addition to the Public Art Festival, helping expand our expectations of ‘public art’ and creating a social, green space wherever its components travel. We hope to inspire artists and the public alike with our programme, so we are delighted to welcome both the Parkcycle Swarm and Rebar group’s director John Bela to give a lecture at YARAT."

Parkcycle Swarm consists of four small mobile parks, which are being cycled through the city. Described by Rebar group as a "human-powered, open space distribution system," Parkcycle debuted in San Francisco in 2007, offering immediate access to green space for the neighbourhoods it parked in. By bringing the project to Baku, Rebar Group aims to expand the possibilities of public sculpture whilst raising awareness of cycle-power, community participation and the importance of green space.

Parkcycle Swam

Works at the Baku Public Art Festival 2013 range from a giant Rubber Duck by Florentijn Hofman (Netherlands), which arrives on 5 September, to Farkhad Haqverdi’s (Azerbaijan) Yard Art initiative, which has transformed Baku’s most neglected spaces, through to a performance and installation 9th Apartment by Georgian collective Group Bouillon, which questioned post-Soviet ideas of public and private space.

Parkcycle Swam

Parkcycle Swarm will be followed by Florentijn Hofman’s Rubber Duck, landing in Baku 5 September.


Founded in 2011 by Aida Mahmudova, YARAT is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to nurturing an understanding of contemporary art in Azerbaijan and to creating a platform for Azerbaijani art, both nationally and internationally.

Parkcycle Swam

Based in Baku, YARAT, (which means 'create' in Azerbaijani) realises its mission through an ongoing program of exhibitions, education events, and festivals. YARAT facilitates dialogue and exchange between local and international artistic networks, including foundations, galleries and museums. A series of residencies further fosters opportunities for global cultural dialogue and partnerships.

YARAT’s educational initiatives include lectures, seminars, master classes, and the Young Artist Project ARTIM (meaning 'progress' in Azerbaijani). ARTIM aims to encourage the next generation of Azerbaijani creative talent to seek a career in the arts and gives young practitioners the opportunity to exhibit their works in a professional context.

Parkcycle Swam

Founded as part of YARAT’s ongoing commitment to growing local art infrastructure, YAY Gallery is a commercial exhibition space. In line with this, YAY (meaning SHARE in Azerbaijani) shares all proceeds from sales between the artist and YARAT and supports a range of national and international artists.