Zoe Akamiotaki is a designer, who has graduated from the Technological Educational Institute of Graphic Art and Design of Athens- Greece, in December 2001. Her final project is called ‘Novel concepts in the design of the bus-stop’. This was inspired by collages from night shots of Athens urban environments. This project represented her Institute at the ‘Salone del Mobile’ exhibition in Milan on 2002. She worked in Athens as a designer, participating in architectural projects, competitions and exhibitions till summer 2003. Having won the Industrial Design scholarship for an MA and PhD from the State Scholarship Foundation, she then specialized into the design of playground equipment. In September 2004, she completed the MA ‘Design by Project’ in London Metropolitan University. The MA dissertation focused on the conceptual design proposal of a playground for early childhood for Liby Gardens at London Bethnal Green. She is now finishing her PhD at SMARTlab, at the University of East London. The contribution of her thesis is twofold. First, this work processes a new disciplinary theory in the aesthetic quality of playground themed equipment, by focusing on its narrative and how this relates to the developmental needs of early childhood. And second, it introduces essential concepts and practical applications of playground themed equipment. Zoe confronts playground design, space and equipment, as a ludic activity; an area where she experiments and produces novel concepts. Her deepest aspiration is to contribute in the deliberation of the visual image of the traditional playground apparatus by working on a variety of concepts and watching children and engaging in free play with them.
Since 2005, Zoe works as a playworker at PATH and Kids London organizations. In Play Times, she participates and collaborates together with Penny, Morgan and Rainer. The strength of this group is in its interdisciplinary. Penny, has a history in balancing wonderfully between initiating, managing and processing dreams that come true; she has been a good fairy for many communities. Morgan, inputs her skilled background and critical thinking in social science landscape; one of her talents is to ask the right question to the right person. Rainer, play-works and dances in space, metaphorically and literally, at the same time; he is one of the most creative professionals in the field.