Join us for the Panel on “Cultural Co-operation in the Western Balkans Region – Perspectives and Achievements”
“Creative Mentorship” is inviting you to join us at the panel on “Cultural Co-operation in the Western Balkans Region – Perspectives and Achievements” on Saturday, 29 February, from 7 PM at the Center for Cultural Decontamination in Belgrade!
The panel “Cultural Cooperation in the Western Balkans Region – Perspectives and Achievements” at the CZKD Center for Cultural Decontamination (Birčaninova 21, Belgrade) will take place on Saturday, 29 February from 7 PM to 9 PM. The moderator of the panel discussion will be Ana Pejović, cultural manager, while regional experts in cultural management will participate in the conversation: professor Milena Dragićević Šešić (Faculty of Dramatic Arts, University of Arts in Belgrade), Vladimir Ćorić (OKC “Abrasevic”, Mostar), Milica Pekić (Kiosk / COOPERATIVE Regional Culture Platform), and Genc Permeti (Professor, Academy of Arts, Tirana).
The spoken language will be English, since it is the principal language of the regional project that “Creative Mentorship” carries through together with OKC “Abrasevic” and “Rruga Me Pisha” foundation, with the support of the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO).
Why is this topic important to us?
Both the intensity of cultural cooperation in the Western Balkans region and the forms of cooperation that are being established are variable. It is certainly not equally developed between various parties of the region – while some are used to working together, others have less opportunity to do so.
During the 1990s, due to a lack of formal cooperation between the former Yugoslav republics, alternative ones were developed. They proved to be much more fruitful in spite of or against official flows. These collaborations developed within the civil sector, and as informal cooperation between individuals, artists, activists, representatives of the alternative art scenes. They have built partnerships and created co-productions based on common themes, and used their work to respond to political events they considered unacceptable.
However, while cultural cooperation in the region has become more intense since 2000, it still hasn’t realized its full potential for two decades. Today, we see many untapped opportunities and unfulfilled possible and potentially fruitful cooperations that could lead to strengthening the region’s capacity and development through mobility and networking. On the other hand, the establishment of cultural cooperation in the region of Western Balkan is conditioned by practical factors and is often both needed and necessary. For example, the societies created by the disintegration of the SFRY have a much smaller cultural market than before, while the linguistic closeness greatly facilitates cooperation between some places in the region.
For all these reasons, we are organizing the panel “Cultural Cooperation in the Western Balkans Region – Perspectives and Achievements” to discuss what we have achieved so far and what is the potential for further development.
We want to map the various forms of artistic and cultural cooperation and to look at the results they gave until now, what is the state of cooperation between the civil and public sector, what progress we have made in comparison with previous periods, and what problems and practical obstacles have been repeated all these years. By including representatives from different countries in the region, we will also have the opportunity to hear and compare different perspectives on these issues.
We invite you to come and join us in the conversation
Why did we choose to organize this panel?
This event is part of the Youth Cultural Co-operation Program, that “Creative Mentorship”, carries through together with “OKC Abrašević” and “Rruga Me Pisha”, with the support of the Regional Youth Cooperation Office (RYCO).
The focus of the program is on establishing dialogue, cultural exchange, and cooperation among youth in the field of culture and media from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia. The project aims to create a base for a future cultural youth network consisting of people who are socially and politically aware, educated, and open-minded. Therefore, 30 young people (aged 20-30), where 10 participants come from each participating party: from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia; active in the fields of culture, media, and art, will have the opportunity to learn through working with mentors as well as from each other, during 6 months (February – July 2020), in teams of three.
Each team will have one person from Albania, one from Bosnia and Herzegovina, and one from Serbia. Participants will work on pilot projects, with the support of mentors (artists and cultural professionals with years of experience in promoting and establishing regional cooperation, reconciliation processes in the region, or anti-war activities).
The goal of the project is to introduce, through the mentoring process and peer-to-peer exchange, relevant initiatives that have existed in the past that could inspire, inform and encourage them to become more involved in activism through culture, to overcome prejudices and stereotypes about “Others” from the region and to contribute to the creation of a network of young, socially active and aware citizens.
The panel event will take place within the first out of three seminars planned in this project and will bring together all the participants from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Serbia.