Sessions for the ECP YN
After eight sessions of the ECP a need was felt to open the unique pan-European forum for the next generation of cultural actors who could add new perspectives. The ECP YN met for the first time on October 12 and 13 in Pécs 2011 with sessions both at the House for Arts and Literature and also at the Kodály Centre. Beside the core group, six already developed NNs from Germany, Poland, Greece, Estonia, Romania and Hungary took part in the session.
This first session had double goals; the first to produce content to a recommendation for the new EU Cultural budget 2014-2020 and also to evaluate and develop the YN and the NNs.
The session contained different workshops, discussions and presentations:
Active Citizenship Through Culture
The starting idea was that cultural projects can be strongly connected to active citizenship. The workshop produced examples on how you can be an active citizen in art and cultural projects. Obstacles were identified as well as success factors. Already existing citizenship initiatives on a European level were given as examples, such as We are More/Culture Action Europe and Active Citizens/British Council.
The importance of cultural and neutral spaces for youth
Youth need a neutral place where can develop their ideas, creativity and express themselves and search for their identity. A space for youth of all backgrounds (social, ethnical and religious) where they can spend free time and collaborate in different artistic projects. The riots that recently took place in London make this an even more burning subject to discuss. Research was demanded from the NNs regarding the situation for youth and creative and neutral spaces in their countries (present status, needs, potential and obstacles).
To this workshop Nina Röhlcke, director of LAVA, a unique culture centre for youth in Stockholm, was invited in order to talk about the background, obstacles and success factors. Nina’s presentation together with the NNs research lay ground for a recommendation to the different NNs local governments and municipalities, as well as to the EU. This recommendation contains information about the needs of youth as well as examples on success factors to implement similar activities. This workshop functioned as an example of how the future NNs and the YN can be organized and conducted. www.kulturhuset.se/default.asp?id=8222&ptid=22540&Category=Lava
Case study / Discussion: Art and culture projects with a successful impact on people’s well being and/or on the society.
These presentations and discussions were held with the aim of identifying successful art and culture projects to add in the recommendation to the EU commission. For instances the “one world film club” in Romania tries to involve young people in the debate of human rights. The project was initiated by Oricum Association and aims to fill in the gap of audio-visual education in schools, and especially that of a structured debate on human rights and global issues such as: migration, discrimination, poverty, racism, social exclusion, climate change or armed conflicts. Teenagers are helped to set up a film club in their high school and inspired to organize monthly screenings of documentaries. From Greece the project “Media dell’ Arte” was presented. Media dell’ Arte is aiming at the preservation, development and improvement of the life of people living in small Greek insular communities. The main project ‘Isolario’ intends to protect and preserve the Aegean islands in cultural, social and environmental terms and to provide some prerequisites for an alternative, rational development.
Last but not least, there was an example given about the project “Sound Bites”. This is a project that through research shows that there is a strong link between music, health and well being.
The project was recently selected as a Mental Health and Wellbeing Award Finalist for the Best of Health 2010 South East Regional Health and Social Care Awards, UK’s flagship awards endorsed by the Department of Health. Sound Bites is being delivered by The Music Mind Spirit Trust, a UK charity that works with musicians, medics and scientists to research the benefits of music. The Trust is working in partnership with local education authorities in Surrey and West Sussex and Cranleigh School. The evaluation partner for the project is Oxford XXI, research network and strategic think tank.
A couple of different projects were presented with the aim of exchanging around them. This functioned as a lab for projects and created open space for development and reflections.
For example Steven Walter and Sunita Maldonado from the German group presented the “Podium festival Esslingen” The Podium – Young European Music Festival Esslingen features dedicated youth, high artistic quality, and innovative concepts in presenting classical music. www.podiumfestival.de
Johanna Suo from the core group presented the project “United States of Europe” – a travelling exhibition about European identity and today’s Europe. It’s an artistic cross discipline project that aims to increase the participation in the European citizenship. The ECP is also a patron of this project and two ECP members participate actively. www.go-use.eu
Anna Miller from the Polish group presented “Girls are drawing comics too”. It is a response to poor women attendance in comic art and stereotypical feminine comic characters, often presented as silent femme fatale. The project aims at promoting comics made by women and raising skills of girls who draw comics by giving them opportunity of work group. From the Romanian group the concept “Short up” was explained: modern short films are shown in classical venues like opera houses.”
Entry barriers in the field of arts and culture
This workshop was held with the aim of supporting art and culture graduates and also young professionals in the obstacles and problems that may be presented in NGOs, public institutions as well as for entrepreneurs. The task was to come up with solutions for that problems and discuss them in the group.
Evaluation, reinforcement, enlargement and development
The workshop about the past and future of the ECP YN was the most important. We asked ourselves: Where are we heading? Do we agree on the content of the mission statement? All participants and NNs seemed aware of how important it is to be part of a network of equal minded professional people and building a lobby for ideas and new structures in culture from both sides – a national and international level. It was agreed to force and stabilise the National networks with monthly meetings and set certain topics for research and vivid discussions. More over we tried to define Culture policy analysis – what do we need to put this into action? Also we planed to contact ministries of culture in all ECP YN countries and make interviews with culture politicians about what role culture has in today’s Europe and how important culture is. Of course, we will work on our funding that is related with our frame within the ECP. For communication and exchange of our network we will work on our website and the blog and other online tools.
The next steps will be :
- Writing a recommendation for the new EU Culture budget 2014-2020
- Develop and strengthen the National Networks
- Development of the communication (website, blog)
- Planning the next session in 2012
- Cooperation wth projects
The first session of the ECP YN in Hungary was coordinated and planned by Antje Kohlrusch and Johanna Suo from the core group.