Artists and Activists from US, Rio, UK and The Netherlands will come together on Friday 23rd June 2017 with local practitioners and community members to discuss community-led projects from cities around the world.

We have a diverse range of speakers this year including;

Chris Coates: Squatter, street performer, clown, carpenter, father, anarchist, peace activist, communard, Engineer of the Imagination, author and Green Councillor. Chris spent 20 years living at People in Common, a small alternative community in Burnley that grew out of the radical underground of the 1970s before moving to Lancaster where he was one of the instigators of Lancaster CoHousing a multi award winning eco cohousing community  consisting of private homes, community facilities, workshops/offices/studios and shared outdoor space and home to around 65 adults and 15 children.

When asked the question “What do I do?” Chris always hesitates – before answering either ‘Carpenter turned construction project manager’ or ‘Making things happen, by whatever means necessary.’ Depending on who’s asking the question


Tiago Cosmo:  is a violinist, art-activist, independent producer and cultural manager born in Rio de Janeiro.  He started his musical studies at age 11, through a social programme in Niteroi.

In 2013, together with Karolin Broosch (German violinist) and Kaja Pettersen (Norwegian cellist) he founded the Camerata Laranjeiras, an orchestra without borders, including young people from the entire city.  Under his leadership, the group has already performed more than 100 times, mostly in public places, not only to make music accessible to all, but to encourage people to appropriate the public space.  Tiago calls himself an ‘Artivist’, using music as a conduit to promote constant mediations in Rio, especially for peace.

Tiago is also the artistic co-ordinator of the AfroReggae Orchestra, one of Rio de Janeiro’s most important social institutions.


Carron Little: from Chicago, an artist who advocates the transformation of cities through cultural programming that engages directly with the public. Her projects start with interviewing the public, the interviews then become poetry inspired by observations, shared stories and experiences. The poetry then becomes a starting point for performance and visual art.

We Make Places are collaborating with Carron who is also spending six weeks in Liverpool for Spare Rib Revisited. The third city in the project after Chicago and Lucerne, Carron will interview women from the city from the ages of 20 to 100. Creating individual poems based on the interviews, returning to create an exhibition of sculptures and performance piece in 2018, the project is designed to explore and give a voice to the life of women in cities.


Jurriën Mentink: Whilst studying he had the opportunity to move into the Humanitas Retirement Home in Deventer (in the Netherlands). He got to live there for free in exchange for 30 hours volunteering with the elderly residents. But he got a lot more than he ever expected – thanks to his neighbours he now has a completely different perspective on life which he is taking into his work as an Urban Designer/Innovator in Elderly Healthcare.

Chiara Organtini: is a cultural producer based in Terni, Italy. She believes in the arts as a driving force for social change and local growth.  In 2009 Chiara co-founded CAOS arts centre, a creative space born from the renovation of a former chemical factory.   She has curated several projects exploring the notion of home, including Forresta when artists were invited to make, and then live, in tree houses within the public space of CAOS.

Kate Stewart: is CEO and co-founder of We Make Places.  Kate is a social entrepreneur who had forged creative collaborations across the world.  As a former theatre practitioner and now a jewellery designer, Kate is fascinated by the act of solo and collective making and the impact it has on personal and community well being

Steve Threlfall:  a designer of places & spaces and also of furntiure, Steve is a University tutor, an interior architect and a connector of people and communities. Steve is also a co-founder of We Make Places and Friends of the Flyover.  He is currently undertaking a residency in Media Lab Prada, Madrid as a collaboration between We Make Places’ project Urban Workbench and Todo Por La Praxis who were one of last years’ contributors to The Maverick City.

The Maverick City is organised by We Make Places CIC who will be launching their Urban Workbench project at the event and running a community build project on the Saturday after the event, making outdoor furniture for a local community project, which the speakers and audience are invited to bring their skills and support to.