Creative Placemaking

Creative placemaking integrates arts, culture, and design into efforts that strengthen communities.

art plus location equals happy


As part of our attendance and sponsorship of CIES 2022 in Minneapolis, The Artistic Fuel Foundation (TAFF), has constructed a creative placemaking project that connects a piece of the city's history with a question that reflects the CIES 2022 conference theme.

TAFF's creative placemaking project, "What will you build?" engages attendees via an interactive art installation in Minneapolis and a digital data mapping artwork below.

The Washburn Mill

In Minneapolis, the Washburn Mill was an anchor of the U.S. flour industry. Several disasters occurred at the mill including an explosion and two fires. Each time, a decision had to be made--rebuild the mill or construct something new. After the first two disasters, the mill was rebuilt. In the 1960s, the mill stopped producing flour. A third fire in the 1990s destroyed what remained of the buildings. After this final disaster, a new vision developed. In 2003, the Mill City Museum opened its doors. An anchor of the Mill City District, this cultural space preserves the history of this land and urban development of the city.

Ruins of the Washburn Mill, now the Mill City Museum
Mill City Museum today | Photo courtesy of The Mill City Museum


As we come out of a two-year pandemic, we are confronted with a world emerging from a global disaster. We must construct our lives under conditions that have changed in ways both dramatic and invisible, and we do so interconnected with the community around us -our individual futures intricately connected in a collective outcome.

We invite you to pause for a moment to consider these changes and then share with us an answer to the following:

As I reimagine my future, I will build .



Below is an outline of the Washburn Mill. Click any section below and share your answer in the popup window. Once submitted, the section will turn a color. The intensity of the color is determined by the number of attendees playing.

All other sections are yours to design. Each section rotates through 15 different colors. The final result is a digitally painted visual landscape created in collaboration with your fellow CIES 2022 attendees.

Note: The graphic template above is the outline of the front facade of the Minneapolis mill ruins.

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