Redondo

by Bernie DeKoven on June 16, 2005

No, I really don’t know why this game is called “Redondo.” It was called that when it was taught to me, and, dutiful propogator of sociocultural artifacts that I am, I share it with you as such.

Redondo is an art-like game. Art-like in that people draw. But only -like, in that they really don’t have to draw anything recognizable. They can scribble and scrawl and doodle, too. In fact, they are encouraged to make drawings that are basically inscrutable, unintelligible, undecipherable, unfathomable; incognizable, inexplicable, incomprehensible, and graphically nonsensical.

Put a stack of paper in the middle of the table, or several stacks, so that everyone has stack-access. Also make sure that each player has equal access to instruments of doodlage: pens, markers, color pencils, crayons. When ready to start, players take a piece of paper and do their doodles. As soon as a doodle is done (becoming a “dondle”?), the doodlist places the paper face down in the middle of the table and says, inscrutably, “Redondo.”

As soon as someone says “Redondo,” someone else takes the drawing, beholds it in all its incomprehensibility, and waits for the inner meaning to surface. As soon as all is self-evident, she gives the work of doodlage its appropriate caption, appropriately writing the caption in the caption-appropriate area. She then places the titled doodle in a separate pile.

And so it goes, until everyone is tired of making new squiggles, and all the drawings are captioned.

Players then take turns picking from the pile of the titled Redondones, reading the caption while holding the work of silliness for all the beholders to, um, behold, and, with the assurance of a gallery owner and linguistic mastery of an art critic, improvise on the vision, meaning, craft and beauty therein expressed.

And, for some reason, much laughter ensues, and a great time is had by all.

“Beauty Striking the Eye of the Beholder”

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Laura Scheinholtz August 20, 2012 at 12:14 pm

Thank you for sharing this game! I brought it with me to facilitate a youth (6th-12th grade) retreat this past weekend in California and I was surprised at how much fun the kids had. We broke the 50-some participants into 5 groups, where they drew, captioned and presented (in their best museum voices), and then we invited them to present their favorites to the whole group. My experience has been that the success of the latter activity *can* be iffy with this age group because of a fear of being judged, but we had no shortage of volunteers (some of whom could just grow up to be curators!).

Additionally, this turned out to be a great activity to go with the theme they chose, which had to do heavily with community. What a fun way to show that we are a community – to finish each others’ art work… and, largely, to learn to laugh at ourselves :) So, thank you again. It’s so nice to have your collection of games to choose from, rather than the same tired ice breakers listed in those lovely 1980′s books people tend to look through!

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Blub December 28, 2013 at 8:16 pm

Maybe just a coincidence, but the word “redondo” means “round” in portuguese :)

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