On this page, we share some of our own writing and articles by others that we think contribute to our field of placemaking. We feel this is important to foster learning, growth and reflection. Placemaking is a term that’s starting to gain greater awareness around the world. Gap Filler has been doing this work for almost ten years now and in the early days, we didn’t use this term at all! Have a read and get in touch if you’ve got any thoughts.

Artists should be giving business advice – Ryan Reynolds

Ryan is a co-founder of Gap Filler and the current Director. He has played a number of roles in the organisation since its inception. This piece draws on his experience as a collaborator with experimental physical theatre company Free Theatre Christchurch and his practice with Gap Filler. He writes about an arts practice and creative process that is entirely comfortable in this space of responding to external constraints and variables rather than having total control.

Desire for the Gap - Ryan Reynolds

For more than three years now, Christchurch has been a city completely in transition, almost without a present tense. It is a post city, the remains of the complicated, contradictory, post-colonial place it once was, with a centre that is 70 per cent destroyed and sparsely populated. It is also, now, a pre city, with three years’ worth of plans, consultation, ideas and designs that exist mainly as a massive set of aspirations yet to be enacted.

Ōtautahi City Voices - interview

Have a watch of this interview between co-founder Dr Ryan Reynolds and Dr Jessica Halliday of Te Pūtahi as part of their Ōtautahi City Voices project. Jessica has interviewed a number of community leaders and city-makers in Ōtautahi for their series sharing a diversity of voices about what people discovered when we were under lockdown in across April and May 2020 and how it influenced or galvanised their vision for Ōtautahi Christchurch.

The Waitematā is my Sea – Frith Walker

Frith Walker is one of our colleagues in Aotearoa, New Zealand. She works for Panuku Development Auckland as Manager of Place Making and is a legend, nice person and hard worker who feels honoured to do the work she does.

Who makes a city? - Mike Fisher

Mike Fisher is a friend and peer. We first met Mike in the intense first years after the earthquakes in Christhchurch when he was working as an urban designer for the Christchurch City Council as part of the Urban Regeneration team. He then went on to be the Placemaking Coordinator at the Adelaide City Council and Manager of City Planning and Development. He is back living and working in Christchurch and is the General Manager at Riverside Market.

The Politics of Pop-Ups – Barnaby Bennett

Barnaby is a friend and colleague of Gap Filler who wrote his PhD thesis (UTS Sydney) on the post-quake wave of public and temporary architecture in Christchurch. Barnaby is a writer, activist, architect, creative soul who isn’t afraid of crtiquing the politics of city-making. Barnaby was involved in a number of post-quake creative projects in Christhcurch as an organiser, writer, hammer swinger, dancer, provocateur and more! This piece is republished with Barnaby’s permission. 


Developing community through collective projects & activities: the benefits of using sociometry - Simon Gurnsey

In this article Simon lets you know how Gap Filler creates ways for people to interact with others and their city, using examples of some of the Gap Filler projects he has been involved with over the past few years. He  focuses on identifying the creative sociometric interventions that build relationships. This article will be of interest to people working in community development, resilience building or other community engagements.