Nightmare Playgrounds, Part 3

"QUANTUM SHOT" #550(rev)
Link - article by Avi Abrams

When you are trapped in a nightmare, you might as well enjoy a swing and a kiddie-slide

As we mentioned in our Part 1 and Part 2, these hilarious and often ugly sculptural atrocities for kids are seen generally in Eastern Europe and Asia, with only a few of them located in America. It seems that these "monuments to bad taste" are the results of either builders being lazy (perhaps on drugs?), or artists sincerely believing in freedom of artistic expression but lacking skills to convincingly pull it off. The weird thing is, we really like to see such crazy playgrounds sprout everywhere - yes, bring them on! - because then your typical urban landscape might even change overnight from "soul-deadening" to "mind-boggling".

1. Aaah! I hope this thing is not going to roll after me (like a wild unshaven Katamari)

Open the gates! Fun awaits "beyond thrice nine lands, in the thirtieth kingdom" (Russian idiom, written in the image below) -

2 - 20. Various awesome examples of Russian playgrounds, including the "Cheburashka" character, via

23. Pig? from Saratov kindergarten - photo by Tatiana Mitrofanowa
24. Wolf, threatening to sing (don't let him!) in playground in Tomsk - image via

25. "Swan Lake Ballet" by Mikhail Dronov, seen in Moscow - image via
26. Is this... Jar-Jar Binks?? - photo by Lyudmila Juhimec

27, 28 - Again, Cheburashka - and Dr. Aibolit "healing" animals;
Bottom image 29, 30, 31 - various abominations

32. Abandoned playground in North Chertanovo, Moscow - via

Mushroom Land! I like it -

33. unknown location

Japanese Manga Monster Land! (I like it even more) -

34. image via

Drunken statue and its dog (turns out to be a memorial to Russian poet Sergei Esenin... come to think of it, this is quite an original and charming interpretation):

35. in Krasnoyarsk; image via

Many Soviet pioneer camps in the 1930s through the 1950s featured standard-issue pioneer statues, which since then fell in awesome disrepair (it's pretty common to find headless, limbless statues of young athletes, spread all over the lush forest). These statues often were erected just outside children playgrounds... see the one below, telling a tragic tale of "love triangle gone wrong":


This is a winner (Peter Straub, author of "Shadowland", take note!) - from the Soviet pioneer camp Petrushkovo:

37. photo by KateLiby

And here are the children that played in these Soviet pioneer camps in the 1930s:

38. - photo by Nikolai Khlopov, via

Playground representations of animals just keep getting weirder (and why not? I ask you, why not). This cow is one of many wonderful cow installations in Madison, Wisconsin:

39. image credit: Masha Vodyanik

40. A goat in Nizhny Novgorod - image via
41. strange puppies hanging in a tree in one kindergarten

42-44, originals unknown

This cow stands near the sign "No Swimming" but conveniently has her eyes closed! -


Check out these "climbing structures" that, just possibly, hide some wicked portals to dark fantasy lands inside of them? -


Here come the Swings!... of all sorts. This one is permanently frozen:

47. - spotted in Fira, Santorini island, Greece.

This one is for the "frozen in time and morphed into bricks" kids:

48. - the bricks are actually an open book, in downtown Charlotte, NC

49, 50 - a space baby, and a pesky monkey

51. Dante Fascell Park in Miami, sent to us by Jay Zwelling

The Slides Are Epic, indeed. They should definitely lead into some sort of alternate reality:

52-55. Hard landing guaranteed

56, 57, 58. - nameless place, a cannon in a forest, and a rusty elephant

This is an actual slide in Poland. Apparently, its designers did not mean anything bad, they just did not check out a particular angle -

59. image via

See the video (slide in action) and continue to the read the rest -


So, now that you've seen how low in taste a slide can be, feast your eyes on an example of a good exciting slide: a giant robot "thing":


Some examples of grass-roots creativity from the Wild West:

61. Does it double as a mail box? We've seen worse. - 62. Beer caps get respect in Bavaria, Germany - image via

63. photo by Paul McLaughlin

Not at a playground, but located close to it, in a family park - "The Mother" (Maman) installation in Paris, by Louise Bourgeois (more info and a gallery):

64. image via

Also not a playground, but so cool a structure that I just had to include it (imagine yourself relaxing on this bench after playing around - but beware, time starts to flow differently once you sit down...) -

65. Bench at the Dali museum entrance in St.Petersburgh, Florida - photo via

Androids and robots get into play:

67, 68. somewhere in Moscow

Back to the miserable kiddie grounds... Babushkas seem to like it, as well:

69, 70

A murder scene -

71 - via

Sigourney Weaver in "Aliens"?! -

72. (original unknown)

So... after everything you've seen so far, you still want to come inside and play around? Go ahead, make my day! -

73. Seen in Moscow, in Sokolniki Park - image via)

Article by Avi Abrams, Dark Roasted Blend.



Also read:
Abandoned Amusement Parks in Asia, Part 2


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Anonymous Anonymous said...

WTF!? Those are really bizarre... ^^

Anonymous Anonymous said...

28,Dr. Aibolit "healing" animals; is more like Walter White testing metha on animals!


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