The Rojc Associations Alliance, as a member of Trans Europe Halles (Europe-based network of cultural centers initiated by citizens and artists) is organizing the next TEH Conference in Rojc Community Center, Pula, Croatia from 25th – 28th May 2017. The topic of this year’s conference is ‘Culture and Sharing Communities’. As multi-purpose activity spaces, socio-cultural centers are open to the community, as well as innovative and flexible in relation with social change. The centers are characterized by dynamic process of inclusion and co-creation, which in turn is achieved by specific sharing practices. It is for these practices that give them a special character and represent their core values and growing strength.
The conference will cover topics that examine the relationship between culture and sharing communities with the aim to create responsible communities that stand in solidarity with one another while supporting a better quality of life for the community. Can we share the culture among each other? If so, in which way? Does this develop new areas of cooperation and creation that are open to the public? How can we establish an audience that actively participates in the creation of art as well as in new models of governance and public policies? Does the popularization of digital media and the easily available digital tools give us new possibilities for time and spaces in which we create, and how does the community affect the creativity of artists in their creative process? How can the practice of sharing improve work, relationships and sustainability in cultural centers?
With an emphasis on the potential of cultural centers for community development, different models of reciprocity and participation will be explored throughout the conference. We will analyse how socio-cultural centers can develop a culture of sharing; how can different practices contribute to social and artistic co-creation, democratization of society, re-evaluation of social values and changing social paradigms and how cultural centers as spaces of sharing and imagination become hubs of social innovation and communities of practice.
The theme of the conference will be developed through four main routes:
- Culture of involvement – How does art contribute to the articulation of social issues/needs and motivate the community to participate? How can community and cultural centers become platforms that actively include citizens and in which manner can this practice influence the changing of social paradigms. (site-specific, social design, methods of community development, co-governing, co-production, sustainable communities…)
- Sharing in Art and Education – innovative practices that are applicable in the fields of art and education (IT practices that improve sharing, art and creative collectives, open platforms of learning, creative commons, artists in residence, creative business models…)
- Open Spaces for Sharing and Imagination – Community and cultural centers as spaces for collaboration and imagination. (Spaces of resistance, Spaces of regeneration, Spaces of meeting, Third spaces, The role of spaces in community development, Co-working, Co-living…)
- Communities of Practice – Sharing skills and knowledge – group intelligence and creativity that, through collaboration, produce social innovation. What is the role of culture, community and art centers in creating opportunities for communities of practice. (time banking, social intelligence, transition cities, social innovations, DIWO or co-design workshops, eco-systems…)
The conference will be held in various formats and attended by a number of international experts in these fields who will discuss a particular topic and present the best practices. The workshops will allow participants to gain new knowledge and apply it in their own local communities. Since the conference is co-organized by the TEH network, it will be attended by representatives of independent cultural centers of Europe, providing a great opportunity for networking and the creation of European partnerships.