Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

What Will Be the Next Guerrilla Movement?


Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
2 Comments » | Published in Design on the Web, Trends  |  2 Comments

Writing about knit bombers the other day got me thinking about the quality-of-life improving guerrillas we have out there today. How did it begin? First there was Sun Tzu and his book that vengeful, calculating or just plain macho dudes in movies like to quote, The Art of War. He advocated the use of guerrilla tactics:

Unfortunately between Sun Tzu’s time and the present, most references to guerrilla tactics are in relation to violence and war. Thankfully, some passionate people have found more positive uses for guerrilla tactics today. Here’s a look at a few:

image from Socal Guerrilla Gardening

Guerrilla Gardening. The first time I heard about a new style of urban guerrillas, it was guerrilla gardeners. When the movement started gaining momentum about 7 years ago, these garden warriors did their dirty work under the dark of night, sometimes donning vests that made them look like municipal workers. Now the movement has become so widespread that these guerrillas are pretty comfortable filling yucky abandoned urban patches with flora in the middle of the day.

Next there were knit bombers, which we covered last week.

image/idea/carrying out of idea by John Locke

In the past year, we have had guerrilla … librarians? If the word guerrilla conjures up Sandinistas, this sounds like an oxymoron. However, these book sharers are lending out books everywhere from New York City phone booths to right next to their own mailboxes in the suburbs. This project may make those who are glued to their smartphones look up and engage with an actual book. It’s also a great use of phone booths, which are well on their way to becoming non-functioning ugly urban sculptures, thanks to the aforementioned smartphones.

If you’re interested in your own little library, you can learn more and order one at LittleFreeLibrary.com.

Now, for my question – what do you think the next guerrilla movement will be? Are you heading one up? Noticed one growing? Let us know in the Comments Section!

About Becky:
Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!

About Becky

has written 1620 post in this blog.

Hi, I'm Becky. I live in Atlanta. Besides acting as the Editorial Director here on Hatch, you can find me talking design over at Houzz. Make me happy — leave a comment!



  1. visualingual says:

    August 15th, 2012 at 5:20 am (#)

    I’m not sure if this is going to be a major trend, but I’m noticing groups of people taking on fairly mundane civic improvements. It’s not so much about art or making a dramatic statement, but really more about improving the day-to-day quality of life for residents. Two examples:

    Spring in Our Steps in Cincinnati cleans up alleys and public stairs so that they can be used as paths. It’s focused on the pedestrian experience.

    Roosevelt Park Revival in Detroit has been rehabbing and improving the park in front of the old train station in Corktown. Much still needs to be done, but you can check out their timeline to see how much the group has already accomplished.

    Both of these seem like examples of the kinds of infrastructure improvements that people want and need to which city governments either can’t or won’t devote scarce resources. So, people are rolling up their sleeves and DIYing the improvements. Pretty cool!

  2. Becky says:

    August 16th, 2012 at 9:27 am (#)

    Maya that is really cool, I had not heard of that, and you know how I love to keep track of my hometown and Detroit! Thanks!

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