Foamboard @ Oaxaca 11.2013

related: communication, read write culture, pop-up museum
flickr: foamboard, lo-fi
flickr group: World Signs
flickr gallery: Foamboard Favorites
slideshare: foamboard
editing: Value of Communication


Find the foamboard
Make a foamboard
Take your photo with the foamboard
Pin the foamboard photo to Pinterest


We enjoy lo-fi (aka heritage media) as much as the 21st century social web.

Foamboard - shown here in practice in Oaxaca, Mexico -- is a portable, inexpensive noticeboard. It's an original idea that can easily be copied. It has a frugal budget but works wonders in creating opportunities for timely conversations. It's a great way to amplify local voices.

Foamboard is a practical, economical and creative lo-fi heritage media. It's part collage, part information board, part asynchronous dialogue and part catalyst for real-time, face-to-face conversation. Foamboards facilitate social briding. The objective is to create a dynamic information service that links cultures and encourages conversation and information sharing. Think of this as an experiment and working model of read write culture which encourages engagement.

Ron's original foamboards were on display at local markets and restaurants, including Bambú, Becari Tonatzin, Comala, Flor de Loto, Grupo Lula'a, Xiguela and the Friday/Saturday Pochimilco Market.

Buzzword Bingo: Foamboard (2011)


We encourage you to take this idea and recreate it in your local space. The foamboard idea can be freely copied and adapted.

If you would like to make a foamboard -- it's a great solo or group project -- buy a standard foamboard to hang in a public area. The foamboard costs about 100 pesos ($10 US dollars). The foamboard can be adorned with mantel del hule (oil cloth) and hung with a mecate (rope). The board should include extra chinches or chinchetas (tacks) for others to add info. Total cost: 150 pesos ($15).

Our advice. Prioritize the 'small is beautiful' mantra by limiting space to small signs, business cards and flyers, nothing too big. Avoid using tape as this can mar the foamboard.

What to add? How about images taken from the Web? It's a great way of linking the virtual and natural worlds. You're welcome to use any of our motivational posters.

How to Play

Add a 'star' to the foamboard photos on Flickr
Favorite/share the foamboard story
Take a photo (with permission) of someone and the foamboard.
Ask someone to take your photo in front of the foamboard
Make your own foamboard

Challenge: Find the differences in the foamboards over time

Bugambilias 1and Bugambilias 2
Jarcieria 1 and Jarcieria 2

Message to the Foamboard Audience
Da Valor a Lo Pequeño: Pidimos anuncios en formato pequeño (media carte o más chiqitito). Por favor quita la información de eventos pasados. Mantiene este pared informatico y toma un foto con esto para subir a nuestro pagina Facebook:

Vocabulary = Vocabulario

Chinches o chinchetas
Business cards
Tarjetas de presentación


Mantel de hule
Glue (Adhesivo Parisina)
Metallic tape (Cinta metalica)


Cutter (Cutter)
Tijeras - Scissors
Pluma - Pen
Imanes - Magnets
Regla - Ruler

What not to use

Large posters (anything larger than a letter).
Posters that hang off the foamboard
Cinta masking - masking tape

Other words

Mapara - Notice board









Baseball Foamboard 04.2013


Creates a positive space for information sharing
It engages passers-by with timely info and extra thumb tacks
It encourages a 'small is beautiful' approach to information.

Be Careful = Ten Cuidado

Foamboard's natural enemy is water. It's vulnerable to rain so be careful that it's not rained on or rained on too much! When the foamboard becomes a bit too dilapidated for your visitors POV, replace the foamboard with a new one. Outdoors foamboards can last 3-4 months with care. Without care, a few weeks!

Pide anuncios y volantes tamaño pequeño (menos de media carta)
Muestra información actualizada, acerca la semana o mes que entra.
Asegura que el foamboard esta bien cuidado y no esta abandonado en la lluvia o por la noche.



'Cuando te propongas ser original, prepárate para ser copiado = If you are original, prepare to be copied.'World Tourism Day 2011
Congratulations! Your photo titled *Oaxaca Foamboard" has been accepted for the UNWTO World Tourism Day Photo Competition 2011.

Flickr Groups

Noticeboards celebrated
World Signs

#foamboard At the end of the day, how do you assemble information for locals and visitors?

Esteban's Foamboard @ Quinque 02.2011

World Photography Day Foamboard @ 08.2011

foamboard @ comala

Foamboard 03.2011

Foamboard @ Oaxaca 04.2011

Sami foamboard 06.2011

Pochimilco Foamboard @ Oaxaca 06.2011 (with notes!)
tavita and the foamboard @ comala 03.2011
Foamboard @ Comala
Oaxaca Foamboard 07.2012
Jacieria Foamboard from January @ Oaxaca 08.2011
Jacieria Foamboard revised in August @ Oaxaca 08.2011
Foamboard @ Oaxaca 02.2012