Cara Courage

Placemaking and Community (UK)

Big Idea:
Placemaking is about telling stories and it’s the stories told that help people better understand and enhance the place where they live, work and play. Placemaking is a community-led design process and its most active tool is the voice – it powers the ideas and the hammers and paintbrushes. Placemaking happens at the level of the street and the block, it happens across whole cities and globally: but it takes place first and foremost in conversation with each other.

About Cara:
Dr. Cara Courage is a collaborative placemaker, arts consultant, writer, researcher, curator and project manager, specialising in visual, live and social practice arts and the urban built environment.

She passionately believe in the arts in society, the citizen’s position as expert in their own place and their right to have their say in what it is like and how it is run; and in the power of creativity in all forms and by all people in the urban realm.

Cara’s book Arts in Place: the arts, the urban and social practice as part of the Routledge Research in Culture, Space and Identity Series, was published in February, and projects in development include: a placemaking textbook; The Future Library, a built environment public engagement arts project; and a modern architecture map of Brighton and Hove and its surrounds.

She is a Fellow of the RSA (Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce), Royal Geographical Society, American Association of Geographers, Academician of Academy of Urbanism and member of the Placemaking Leadership Council.

Cara’s career spans 14 years, working across art forms with a particular expertise in visual arts; architecture/built environment; cultural learning/arts CPD; HEI creative endeavour; and collaborative and networked practice. Award-winning, I work with individuals and organisations on a broad range of development activities as well as initiating my own arts-led built environment and placemaking interventions.