Community-led Civic Spaces | Twosixty Talks
For Twosixty's first public event, we will gather together on site at 260 Sydney Road to start the conversation on community-led civic spaces with local prolific community organisers and place-makers
Facilitated by public policy professional Emanuela Savini of The Public Value Studio, the discussion includes Kimba Thompson of Blak Dot Gallery, Fjorn Butler of Future Tense and Ria Pillai of Grassroots Gatherings.
Civic spaces often reflect aspects of a city’s history, its people and can be spaces of important community connection. But who influences how these spaces are designed, what they say about their local community and how they are used? What would a community-led approach to creating a new civic space look like?
Emanuela Savini is a public policy professional currently undertaking research in participatory democracy. As a Director at The Public Value Studio, an organisation committed to supporting and building civic participation, her practice is centred on community-led, or citizen-informed, policy responses and action. This is based on a deep belief that the tacit knowledge and expertise communities bring is fundamental in bringing about the change that we want to see in our cities, and society more broadly.
Kimba Thompson is a Wiradjuri woman, resident in Melbourne for over 25 years and is the founder and Director of Blak Dot Gallery. Based in Narrm (Melbourne), it the leading gallery for contemporary First Nations art in Australia. Blak Dot Gallery was established in 2011 as a contemporary First Nations artist-run space to showcase contemporary artworks from world Indigenous cultures.
Blakademy is a dedicated critical Indigenous learning space for First Nation Creatives that offers hot desks for study or group workshops, reading and writing, as well as a large collection of global and local Indigenous and non-European diasporic texts (catalogues, monographs, anthologies, magazines).
Fjorn Butler is an artist, researcher, and community-event organiser. As an artist, she works primarily in sound and narrativised performance under the name Papahilia.
As a researcher, she is interested in how neoliberal forms of governance in the colony use racialised and sexualised discourses to shape the political; which then informs her writing on sound-poetics and the challenge they pose to anglophone notions of sound and music as property.She has coordinated, managed and overseen community-based projects that cross disciplinary fields, including the facilitation of artist and sound workshops, advocacy campaigning and community building.She is also a director of creative sector consultancy Future Tense, and co producer of Writing and Concepts lecture series.
Ria Pillai is the Community Engagement Coordinator and Committee member at Grassroots Gatherings. She is 23 years old and currently completing her Bachelors of International Studies at Deakin University. She has always had a strong interest in international issues and cultures and has spent a significant portion of her life travelling around the world.
She currently works as a Disability Support Worker for empowerment advocate John Mckenna. She has experience in youth work with The Reach Foundation where she was a facilitator for 5 years. She has always believed strongly in working with the community and spends a lot of her time volunteering, including at Cubbies, an after school program for the young people who live in the Fitzroy commission housing.
When not working or studying Ria is also an intern at Talent Beyond Boundaries, a refugee serving organisation who are seeking to reform the visa system to include a skilled humanitarian pathway into Australia. She one day hopes to work in development, to learn about, understand and support the communities around her.
Through process, design and action, we acknowledge, respect and thank the Wurundjeri and Boon Wurrung people of the Kulin Nation on whose lands this project is based.
Twosixty is a carbon neutral project.