Balkan-Arab Exchange platform  – the reality of cultural mobility between the Balkans, the Arab world and Europe.
8th & 9th May 2014
Pogon – Centre for Independent Culture and Youth
Zagreb, Croatia.

Following our meeting in Belgrade in September 2013 this exchange platform will continue to provide a meeting point and capacity builiding opportunities for cultural actors and develop further the issues for cultural and arts development in Balkan/Arab/Europe exchanges; upholding human dignity, safeguarding cultural diversity and defending cultural rights.

Our meetings aim to build the capacities of the cultural managers we support so that they can structure and develop, on a longer term, cross-border cooperation, networks and quality art projects. Mobility should be seen as a return trip bringing back potential to the starting point of the journey; potential in terms of multilateral partnerships that require specific know-how.

Over the last three years we have build up an informal network of some 400 cultural and arts managers working with or within the Balkans and Arab regions and organised exchange platforms in Guimarães, Portugal, Beirut, Lebanon, Belgrade, Serbia.

Thursday, 8th May – POGON
16.00 – 17.30 Interactive session 1 moderated by Vahid Evazzadeh (The Counter Institute), RCF expert, Copenhagen, Denmark

Re-thinking cooperation – Networking, exchange and video presentations

Description: Artists and cultural operators from the Arab world and the Balkan regions are keen to exchange but mobility funding is fragmented and rare. The conflictual and unstable situation in some countries provokes a forced mobility rather than a desired one. Why and how should we cooperate between the two regions? How can we improve the situation so that co-productions and co-building of projects can emerge through networking, art collectives, art movements, exchange, virtual discussion forums…? Contributions by Shehab Hassan (El Madina), Nisrine Boukhari (AllArtNow), Amine Hattou (Independent), Jovana Nikolic (Kulturmobil/Prababa Prod.), Neja Tomsic (MoTA), Christiane Azzer (Anna Lindh Foundation), Walid Soliman (Walidoff International), Ahid Ezhaiman (ArtLab Jerusalem), Rami Shamsheddine (Will Association)

17.45 – 19.15 Interactive session 2 moderated by Raul Abeledo, (Econcult), RCF expert, Valencia, Spain

Sustainability and economic models of cooperation: spaces, opportunities

Description: The framework for mobility and cooperation between the Arab and Balkan regions is almost non-existent with very few cultural players. How can economic and sustainable models of cooperation be set up? What does this require? How can we improve the situation for art to express itself in the public space? What training opportunities should be developed to allow this? Contributions by Alexandra Uzelac (IRMO), Katarina Pejovic (Shadowcasters), Giuseppina Checola (Archiviazioni), Lucia Falco (Teatro in Rivolta), Lukman Derky (Independent), Srdjan Tunic (Transcultural Dialogues), Ihor Savchak (Centre for Cultural Management Lviv), Darko Fritz (Grey Area), Bojan Djordjevic (Ring Ring Festival)
Friday, 9th May – POGON

09.45 – 11.15 Debate 1 moderated by Ines Vanjak, Kultura Nova Foundation

Pathways of Regional Cooperation: Role, Experiences, Models, Perspectives and Challenges

Description: Cooperation between cultural civil society organizations in post-Yugoslav countries has been developing for many years, but still there are no financial instruments that would ensure continuous and sustainable cross-border cooperation in the region. How can we create an institutional framework that will provide long-term support/funding models for regional cooperation? What are the experiences of the Arab world? Introduction: Katarina Pavic (Clubture Network / Kooperativa), Milica Pekic (Independent Cultural Scene of Serbia / Kooperativa) and Davor Mišković (Drugo more)

11.30 – 12.45 Debate 2 moderated by Serene Huleileh, Arab Education Forum, Safar Fund, Amman, Jordan

What should our advocacy for regional cooperation be?

Description: Cooperation requires a certain number of ingredients: conditions for dialogue (such as mobility and translation) but also a legal and institutional framework. When this is lacking we need to advocate for it. This debate will look at the coalitions that exist already and on ideas to improve our advocacy and develop synergies for it. Contributions by Khadija El Bennaoui (Independent) Vesna Danilovic (Cultural Centre of Belgrade), Darka Radosavljevic (Remont), Alma Salem (British Council Lebanon), Elli Papakonstantinou (Vyrsodepseio), Herman Bashiron Mendolicchio (Interartive Magazine), Gorana Oreskovic ( Zagreb Dance Company)

15.00 – 16.15 Workshop 1 moderated by Deborah Hustic, Senior Advisor, Ministry of Culture, Croatia

How do we address collaboration between Arab and Balkan operators in the EU institutional framework?

Description: This workshop aims to give participants the opportunity to learn about the current framework in the EU with regard to culture and external relations (funding opportunities, programmes and policies). It should provide the opportunity to voice opinions about what EU policy should be and formulate recommendations. Contributions by Lola Joksimovic (Team Europe), Gyorgi Szabo (Trafo), Lisa Baldacchio (Malta Arts Council), Aneta Petrovska (Macedonian Design Council), Kamel Salih (Pop in Djerba), Cristina Farinha (Addict), Isidora Ilic (Transimage Platform), Branka Bencic (Independent), Marino Jurcan (Metamedia), Katarzyna Rauszynska (Promised Land)

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