Immaterial Monuments, Participatory Art and Community 2015
“Immaterial Monuments, Participatory Art and Community” was a collaboration between art and social sciences faculties with the aim to reach social changes through artistic interventions. Specific objectives was to create a platform between artist groups, universities and NGO: s in the four different countries; Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia and Sweden.
The objectives were to meet at the crossing of art, society, public space and social sculpture and to share knowledge on tools for working with marginalised people, vulnerable groups, debate and implementation of new strategies for connecting art and urban meetings, challenges of globalization and migration.
Many people have little access to art. In todays society access to culture is more important than ever. How can we reach out to each other across the social, mental and physical boarders? Art has proven a good way to reach vulnerable groups and strengthen groups of employees for communicating further issues about democracy and the building of selforganized development. Groups of people in the countries Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia and Sweden suffer from marginalization and need to be addressed and included in society. Freedom of speech and expression is necessary for women as well as men. Transcultural meetings in a changing society can help individuals voice their concerns and be co-creators in the developments they seek. There are tensions and serious conflicts between ethnic groups from Albanian and Macedonian origin. The Albanian partner Refraction Association have obtained artistic programs and methods of conflict management between these groups and want to continue with this important work for a sustainable future and peaceful community. To work with grass-roots organisations can create an emancipatory politics of globalization from below.
With support from Creative Force, the Swedish Institute
Photo: My Lindh
Visualize the Invisible, 2013-2014
In the project “Visualize the Invisible”, 2013-2014, organisations in Sweden and Balkan have implemented participatory art projects in Albania, Croatia, Macedonia and Sweden. The artists used different art forms such as video, installations, performance and dance in co-operation with people in residential areas, roma communities, in social institutions such as prisons, schools and care institutions and reach a wider discussion about arts impact for a societal change.
All participants were part of a mutual artistic creative process, both the artists and the people they were interacting with. An important aspect in the project was to widen the art-market in the specific area and make it visible in a European context. The artists shared their experiences with each other through workshops in Balkan and finally in an international exhibition and book release in Sweden. The outline was to examine arts role in the society, to give artistic tools, concept and theories and to build interdisciplinary and international networks. There were many advantages in bringing artists to take place in institutions, communities and working places. In this project, art acted as a different role model; the relationship to the artist was more equal rather than to someone in authority. The artists inspired and gave confidence to the participants with new approaches and provided extra “tools in the tool box”. Countries such as Albania, Croatia and Macedonia have low funding for cultural organizations and artists and the access of culture for all citizens is still limited.
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