“We may see the overall meaning of art change profoundly – from being an end to being a means, from holding out a promise of perfection in some other realm to demonstrating a way of living meaningfully in this one.”
Allan Kaprow

Our friend Robby Herbst at the Llano del Rio Collective & Speakers Bureau posted this amazing Municipalist Bibliography compiled by Alan Moore (who came out to MPLS this time last spring to begin our conversations on Municipalism). Check it out, it’s a fantastic resource!

Tonight’s the night, folks! Join the City as Commons group and Beyond Repair for the opening of What Can a City Be? A Municipalist Gathering. We will begin two days of conversations and workshops tonight at the Carlson School at UMN (info below) with a panel discussion considering “from below organizing” from international, national, and indigenous perspectives with our guests Carol Maziviero (São Paulo, Brazil), Daniele Tognozzi (Berlin, Germany), & William “Naawacekgize” Quackenbush (Ho-Chunk Nation / Wisconsin).

The conversations that we, as the City as Commons group, have been hosting over the last year have been invigorating. Opening up multiple avenues of thought regarding how we come together, building power across difference, and what it means to be “neighborly” in our present, deeply contentious moment. I’m extremely excited to bring more people into this conversation to see where it grows.

I hope to see you this evening, and if you can’t make it, please take a look at the schedule in full to see what other events you might attend.




Panel Description

@ Carlson School 1-123
University of Minnesota (West Bank)

“Cities as Commons? Exploring Municipalist Movements in International and Rural Contexts”

Talks and panel discussion with Carol, Daniele, and Bill that will invite comparisons between international and rural perspectives on municipalism, including topics such as direct democracy, social power and reproduction, organizing bottom up movements, rural-urban divides, and the rise of democratic alternatives to the centralized state.

Carol Maziviero (São Paulo, Brazil) – Researcher on insurgent urbanism, and urbanism in the digital age from the Architecture School of the São Judas Tadeu University in São Paulo,

Daniele Tognozzi (Berlin, Germany) – Artist, activist and urban studies researcher from Spatial Strategies at KHB Weißensee ( and Tesserae Urban Social Research (

William “Naawacekgize” Quackenbush (Ho-Chunk Nation / Wisconsin) – Indigenous activist and scholar, Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the Ho-Chunk Nation (

On Thursday night What Can a City Be? will host its first conversation between activists from Sao Paulo, Berlin, and the Ho-Chunk Nation of the Kickapoo Valley in the Driftless Area of Wisconsin. Bill Quackenbush, Historic Preservation Officer for the Ho-Chunk Nation, and one of our nights conversants, made the suggestion that we host a cultural exchange for the evening, an idea that we thought perfectly fit the tone and nature of the gathering in full.
And so… Please consider bringing an item that reflects upon you personally. These items will be exchanged at various times during the evening. Bringing something is not mandatory for attendance.


Folks – Next Friday night at 6:30 I’ll be at CTUL leading a conversation about the power and promise of a city that supports, rather than drowns out, the narrative of a multi-subject urban experience.
How would MPLS be a different place to live were we discuss (and live!) our lives together as a vast, at times in and at times out of step, series of histories and experiences, realities and dreams? Rather than a narrative of “MPLS is this…” what is to be gained from, “MPLS is this, and this, and this, and this…”? A “Yes, and…” urbanism!
I’m so excited to walk up the street from home to one of the most vibrant spots in the neighborhood to discuss this with friends I have these types of conversations with often, like Jeremiah Bey Ellison, Jennifer Newsom Carruthers, & Sarah Jane Keaveny, and folks I am recently getting to know, like Tina Sigel, & Ginger Jentzen. – Sam

This is, of course, all part of the City as Commons Group, and Beyond Repair’s, gathering next week, What Can a City Be? Here more info on that…

“Imagining the Just City: Movements Across Difference”

We all know that the city is an amalgam of subjects, but how is that played out, and how can we begin to move past certain powerful subjects objectifying others in an attempt to create a “common narrative?” With a nod towards pioneering queer activist Harry Hay and his ideas on subject-subject consciousness, our conversation considers the benefits of a heterogeneous city and how municipalists can create the conditions for subjecthood to thrive and for multiple narratives to flourish simultaneously.
Panelists: Jeremiah Bey Ellison (City Councilperson – Ward 5), Jennifer Newsome (Dream the Combine), Ginger Jentzen (15 Now, Socialist Alternative), Tina Sigel (Restorative Justice Community Action), Sarah Jane Keaveny (RN/BSN, mother, nurse, poet, activist, enthusiast)