I am the co-founder and creative director of Urban Gorillas, a Nicosia-based NGO that focuses on building healthy and creative cities. I am also a licensed architect, interior designer and urban planner. My work spans many aspects, and includes the practice of architecture, socially-engaged art and research on sustainable city development. I am currently living in Tokyo where I start to investigate different initiatives that support sustainable city development.
Which additional experience/skills can people of Placemaking Europe reach out personally to you for?
People can reach out for me for curatorial work: I have curated numerous exhibitions; amongst the most significant were the curation of Urban Gorillas work at the MaXXI Museum in 2017 and the co-curation of the Cyprus Pavilion for the Venice Biennale of Architecture in 2018.
Further members of Placemaking Europe can contact me if they wish to carry out projects in Japan where I currently reside.
Which experience/skills can people of Placemaking Europe reach out to your organisation for?
Urban Gorillas consists of a team of architects, urbanists, museologists, economists and cultural project managers. Together we are strong in generating ideas about building better cities, organising events that are engaging communities and building installations that transform urban spaces.
Our local context in Cyprus where we focus our activities is also interesting in many perspectives and has given us expertise in further thematics like peace &reconciliation, working with diverse communities and thinking of solutions for sustainable development of a Mediterranean island.
Describe one of the projects you are most proud of
We are proud of all of our projects!
But let me describe our latest project that took place in a forgotten neighborhood of Nicosia, Kaimakli.
Urban Gorillas in collaboration with the Kaimakli residents have organized Pame Kaimakli festival, 2018 edition, with the theme "Adopt an Artist".
We have asked Kaimakli residents to adopt an artist in their private spaces and present their works during the festival.
Old Kaimakli became an open gallery, and a hub of creative and social actions. Residents of Kaimakli hosted the works of local and international artists, "adopting an artist" and co-curating exhibitions, installations, and happenings in homes, shops and social spaces of the neighborhood.
During a week of events, the residents have been actively engaged in the whole process of the festival. Societal ties grew stronger and cultural/art projects were made accessible to crowds that are not the usual suspects of the cultural scene of the island.