ArgLab • Conference

Capitalist and Anti-Capitalist Place-Making through Street Art

Quill Kukla

On January 24th, at 6 PM, Quill Kukla will give a public lecture on “Capitalist and Anti-Capitalist Place-Making through Street Art” at Mouraria Creative Hub. Free entry.


Street art can function as a tool of place-making. Place-making is the process through which a physical space is transformed into and maintained as a lived, experienced place with a particular place identity—an integrated place that supports specific ways of living, identities, and experiences. Whereas it was formerly associated with criminality, vandalism, and subversion, in recent years, street art has often been co-opted by capitalism and turned into a tool of place branding and place marketing. Despite this co-option, street art continues to serve different place-making functions and purposes in different neighborhoods. I will explore the complex and uneven relationship between street art, capitalism, resistance, and identity, through a series of neighborhood case studies.


Quill Kukla is Professor of Philosophy at Georgetown University in Washington, DC. They have training in philosophy, urban geography, cultural studies, and public health. Much of their work concerns the way that material places shape the identity, actions, and experiences of those who inhabit them, and vice-versa. Their most recent book is City Living: How Urban Dwellers and Urban Spaces Make One Another (Oxford University Press 2021) and their upcoming book is Sex Beyond ‘Yes!’: Pleasure, Consent, and Agency, forthcoming from W. W. Norton & Co. in 2025. In their spare time, they are an amateur boxer and powerlifter.

Event co-organised with Ana Gariso (ICNOVA) and Mouraria Creative Hub / Câmara Municipal de Lisboa.

Event supported by the Foundation for Science and Technology (Fundação para a Ciência e para a Tecnologia) of the Portuguese Ministry of Education and Science under the project UIDB/00183/2020.