EU National Institutes for Culture - EUNIC

Cluster Fund 2022: Selected Projects

Cluster Fund 2022: Selected Projects
Babylon Europa 2022, a project supported under the EUNIC Cluster Fund 2021 implemented by the EUNIC clusters Berlin & Prague.
Copyright: Jim Kroft
NatureFuture exhibition, a project supported under the EUNIC Cluster Fund 2021 implemented by the EUNIC clusters Berlin & Prague.
Copyright: Jim Kroft

This year's EUNIC Cluster Fund will co-finance 18 projects with a total of 312,270.00 euros to be implemented throughout 2023.

With EUNIC's ongoing commitment to the UN's SDGs, and 2022 being designated as European Year of Youth, this years call strongly welcomed project proposals that directly address young people through their activities.

The projects co-financed under the Cluster Fund 2022 are the following:

Costa Rica – Jardines de Artistas en San Jose
Costa Rica is internationally considered to be a green country. Its environmental conditions enable the miracle of exuberant biodiversity, which is especially observed in the protected areas outside the cities. However, the city of San Jose presents an urbanism that lacks sufficient green areas. This, together with the fact that houses are covered with fences, generates a feeling of being inside a prison city, creating a sense of insecurity and mental health problems among its population. This proposal aims to create "Artists' Gardens" in strategic locations of San José, that incorporate green areas in the city center and in uninhabited spaces, expanding the green areas of the city and its interurban corridors. These gardens would be designed under the concept of “environmental resilience”, displaying a message related to the protection of biodiversity and the fight against climate change. On the one hand, biological diversity within the city would be improved, favoring the presence of pollinating insects. On the other hand, signs of identity would be designed for people to take ownership of their urban landscape. Three gardens would be created by three European artists, proposed and financed by EUNIC members. The project would be supported by NGO Red de Juventud y Cambio Climático (Climate Change and Youth Network) and NGO Rio Urbano, which would facilitate mediation sessions on climate change to schools and other social platforms, including digital channels.

El Salvador – Cartografías Líquidas: Ne ujti pal tatuka (Paths for sowing)
EUNIC El Salvador Cluster continues its commitment to environmental advocacy through culture and networking. In the last edition, Liquid Cartographies made environmental organisations and initiatives visible through the mapping of environmental organisations, artistic residencies of collective creation and the creation of an exhibition to attract new audiences to environmental advocacy. Innovative tools and networking were the main causes of success. CL II aims to maintain this space of encounter between art, culture, education, the environment and the creation of alliances, promoting sustainable development and integrating vulnerable groups as protagonists in the defence of the environment. This new edition will be characterised by the empowerment of young people, the identification of good environmental practices, the strengthening of international relations and artivism. Firstly, groups of young people will become promoters of environmental advocacy through technical training for the construction of cartographies. This will reflect the good practices developed by the organisations mapped in the previous phase, offering successful experiences that can be replicated elsewhere. Secondly, under the same logic of attracting new audiences, the results will be exhibited through innovative artistic tools and incorporated into the exhibition. Finally, we will take the exhibition to other Salvadoran and European territories, in conjunction with artistic workshops that promote environmental awareness, mutual learning and the consolidation of alliances.

Hong Kong – EU Street Art Meets Hong Kong
Hong Kong is a vibrant, international, cultural city ideal for showcasing street artists. EUNIC HK cluster has joined hands with local non-profit organization HKWALLS to bring more EU street artists to Hong Kong as part of the annual HKWALLS festival that has taken place every March since 2014. While EU and European artists have been and integral part of HK street art clutlure in the past, EUNIC HK would like to introduce a new platform for exchanges. Under this project, four artists from the Czech Republic, France, Germany and Italy, co-curated by HKWALLS and EUNIC HK members, will come to Hong Kong to create public art in a selected area of Hong Kong in March as part of HKWALLS 2023 festival. They will also join hands with other EU artists and potential nominies to present different kind of street art in free forms (seminars, VTCs, posters, paintings, galleries presentations etc. on the margins of HKWALLS) during side events, so that other MS can be involved with the support of the EU Office. HKWALLS is a non-profit arts organisation that aims to create opportunities for local and international artists to showcase their talent in Hong Kong and internationally through the mediums of street art and street culture. HKWALLS celebrates creativity, originality and freedom of expression. HKWALLS builds connections and relationships with artists, the community, and organisations worldwide through high-quality public art, while making the creative process accessible to all.

London, UK – Harvesting Young Creativity
Harvesting Young Creativity is a project supporting Young at Art - an independent children's festival focused on performing arts in Belfast, through a series of parallel activities. During the 10 day festival (3-12 March 2022), the project will bring together and connect visionary festival leaders from Europe with local (Northern Ireland) counterparts in round tables to discuss and share knowledge, strategies, successful case studies and address challenges faced by festivals today, especially in unfunded areas. Additionally, the project will bring EU performing artists and theatre companies to Northern Ireland to connect and engage with local primary schools and create and deliver various workshops tailored to the children’s needs, aiming to inspire, foster and support the development of young creative talents. It will also bring numerous artistic interventions (varying from choir singing to installation and puppet or object theatre performances) by local and EU artists, to the festival venues, aiming to facilitate and enrich the children's experience of the festival.

Mongolia – Blue Sky Messengers
A European Mongolian Youth Jazz Orchestra (EMYJO), composed of students and teachers from all participating countries as well as the host country Mongolia, will rehearse for one week in a ger camp in the Mongolian countryside (Selenge Province). This will be followed by a concert in Sükhbaatar, the capital of Selenge Province, a concert in Darkhan, Mongolia's second largest city, and 5 concerts in Ulaanbaatar. Concerts will be in public squares as well as in a larger venue, such as the National Philharmonic Hall. Moreover, the teachers will hold workshops open to the public at the Mongolian State Conservatory and the Fat Cat Jazz Club in Ulaanbaatar to expand the target group and pass on knowledge and experience. This will strengthen the sustainability of the project and give it a more long-term focus.
To prepare for the trip to Mongolia, there will be online cooperation between the participating students and teachers of all participating countries for a total of five months to create a unique repertoire representing each participating country as well as Mongolia as the host country. Each participating country will be physically represented by at least two musicians and one teacher which will be equally divided in the various sections of the orchestra. In addition, each participating country will be represented.

Netherlands – FAIR P(L)AY: Fair practices in the cultural sector
FAIR P(L)AY is a cycle initiated by the EUNIC-NL cluster focusing on fair practices in the cultural sector, aiming to discuss and implement new, and existing, ways of creating fair environments in terms of funding, remuneration, copyright and mobility in Europe. Efforts to improve the changeable and often precarious position of professionals in the cultural sector and creative industry are underway in Europe, be it on a national or on an EU level. The COVID-19 crisis had a profound impact on art and culture throughout Europe, and especially on the individual artist. While infrastructure varies from country to country, several initiatives have been launched throughout Europe over the past years, aiming to raise awareness and establish fair practices among stakeholders. How to connect these initiatives and ensure that their recommendations are applied within the cultural sector on a European level? The NL cluster would like to focus on the topic of fair collaboration in cultural relations, facilitating the discussion on how current implications can be improved upon to generate a fair environment protecting the makers. Therefore, the upcoming two editions of FAIR P(L)AY in 2023 will assume a hands-on form with a bottom-up approach; namely through practical workshops. Precarity, temporality and gaps in the policy field are subtopics that are also relevant for the Dutch context.

New York, US – ECO Solidarity 2023
ECO Solidarity is a movement which since its foundation in 2020 addresses the urgency for a more human-centered sustainable design, in product design, spatial planning, and architecture in response to war, humanitarian, environmental and public health crises. ECO Solidarity is a platform for creating a global conversation in presenting and connecting European and US design studios of new generation to redefine sustainability focusing on public safety, health, and well-being in public spaces, as well as ecology, climate change, and the key objectives of SDG’s and Green New Deal. In 2023 ECO S mission will address the urgency for reconstruction and recuperative sustainable solutions that respond to needs of refugees, resettlement of Ukrainian and other nations’ communities displaced as a result of war. Our goal will be to invite designers, and architects of primarily but not limited to the young generation, to redefine mapping of urban infrastructure to better accommodate displacement of mass populations. Through sharing research and resources, ECO S aims to globally redirect the way the future post-war public spaces, living spaces, and shared environments, are envisioned. The program will build on the 2022 edition and will debut in January 2023 with a new open call in which each participating EUNIC organization will recruit EU based designers (younger than 30), and a Ukrainian designer that will also contribute a project and research in progressive vision of recuperation in public spaces.

Pakistan – Digital Arts Festival
The project will contribute to expanding access to creative industries in Pakistan, supporting young artists and cultural entrepreneurs working in digital arts (meaning photography, video art, virtual and augmented reality inclusive of digital architecture and metaverse, sound art, visual art created by digital means, and animation) by boosting skills and capacities with focused training courses. With the digital arts blossoming in the EU, this industry can act as a bridge between Pakistani and European cultures, and a key agent in promoting peace and intercultural understanding. Through collaborative artwork and trainings, we aim to empower young generations of creators and artists as a creative and innovative force, agents of change, driving social progress. This project will build on our successful online digital arts festival in 2021 and respond to research and on-the-ground understanding that the digital arts represent great potential for sustainable income for young people in Pakistan. The arts generally, and especially the international reach of digital arts provides an opportunity for economic recovery and resilience following the flooding of 2022. The project represents a true opportunity for enhancing cultural relations, wherein the talent and incredible potential of Pakistani artists can reach EU audiences, and EUNIC Pakistan activities can contribute to infrastructure and capacity building for young artists as well as a deeper local understanding of the EU.

Republic of Congo – Brazzaville Fashion Week
Brazzaville Fashion Week highlights contemporary fashion, design, visual arts, performance modules, conferences and workshops. The Fashion Week was created in 2022, and from its first edition, it is a major event that engages participants and artists in an exchange of know-how, training, skills and experience. It contributes to the emergence of young talents, as well as to the promotion of artists already revealed.
The event had a first edition in 2022. On this occasion we organized a series of conferences on the fashion industry and three evenings of fashion shows. We wish to renew this meeting by focusing on the training of the young designers of tomorrow. The four axes are therefore international openness, awareness of future environmental issues, meeting with profession-als in the sector and the professionalization of young designers.
The Fashion Week is organized around several highlights: styling and sewing workshops dedicated to future designers; workshops and round-tables on the fashion economy for pro-fessionals in the sector and finally fashion shows intended for the audience, partners and non-professionals.
For its second edition in 2023, the focus will be on training and structuring the fashion sector in the Republic of Congo and the sub-region. It will be represented stylists and professionals from all Africa and especially from Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon … Each EUNIC Member will propose talents to be invited from their respective countries.

Romania (+Greece & Hungary) – Cultural Management Academy: European Capitals of Culture - Legacy & Sustainability
The Cultural Management Academy (CMA), launched in 2015, aims to increase capacity of cultural operators and stimulate exchange and long-term collaboration in South-eastern Europe. The main goal of the programme is to strengthen a weakened cultural sector. Elefsina (GR), Veszprém (HU) and Timișoara (RO) will host the ECoCs of the year 2023. Taking this as an incentive, CMA 2023 aims to bring the three cultures into dialogue and to support them in the long term. The project is committed to a sustainable cultural sector, so
CMA focuses on the question of legacy and sustainability. While the title of ECoC offers
great opportunities, it also carries dangers, raising the question of what happens after 2023, when the momentum fades. What is the heritage of ECoCs, its impact on the local cultural scene and what are the challenges related to ECoCs? CMA will support cultural managers operating in the three countries achieve tools and strategies to keep the legacy arising from the Capital of Culture designation alive in the long term.

Saudi Arabia – AI for Art
The new artistic dynamic in Saudi Arabia, unleashed by the Vision 2030 development plan, transforming the society and opening up the country, is meeting with the strong will of putting the country at the forefront of technological innovation. In this particular context, artificial intelligence (AI) is getting a lot of attention among the general public and the authorities. AI’s development in the Kingdom is transversal and spreads to many sectors. It offers opportunities as much as it creates tension between human action and innovation. AI also influences artistic creation. Some Saudi artists, such as Dania Saleh, already seized this powerful tool to extend further the scope of their interventions. However, the spaces of creation and expression are still limited, the opportunities of artistic dialogue, included between Saudi artists and international artists, are not so numerous. Our project aims at creating this space and supporting the young Saudi artistic creation. Firstly, we will hold a one-week workshop for 10 young Saudi artists (mixed group) in Medina, conducted by European and Saudi artists and researchers from King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) and from innovative companies (eg.PASQAL). Then we will present the outputs at the 2023 Global AI Summit in Riyadh, a large annual event dedicated to AI which encompasses the cultural sector. This project will contribute to the dialogue on AI and on its impact on the art and the role of the artist.

Slovakia – The Art of Evidence - Artists & Journalists against conspiracy, misinformation & propaganda
In an increasingly complex media landscape characterised by numerous platforms, channels and forums it has become easy to spread misinformation, fake news, war-related propaganda and conspiracy theories. A recent Europe-wide survey from the Centre for Bioethics/ University Trnava came to the conclusion that „Slovaks are among the most likely to believe in conspiracy theories“, after the country registered one of the highest conspiracy index scores ever recorded. This is a challenge especially for the young generation, partly because the pandemic forced a whole generation of young adults into a digital isolation and left them vulnerable and susceptible to these forms of manipulation. With the horrific terrorist attack by an 18-year old on members of the LGBTIQ community in Bratislava, we have just witnessed how social media conspiracy theories can also lead to real violence.

The Art of Evidence offers an innovative approach:

  • It combines critical journalism, art, education, design and research into a
    temporal think & do tank to challenge, undermine and bypass the toxic narrations
    that we face every day in a critical and playful way
  • it invites young adults as co-creators
  • it creates a safe space for learning, testing and experiencing
  • It understands education today as more than discussion, more than teaching and learning and writing, but as an innovative, playful encounter with the online world that goes beyond the classroom, the school, the university to unfold its power

Sri Lanka – Creative Island – From Forest School to Sensory Architectures
Sri Lanka’s ethnically and socially diverse communities are massively affected by the ongoing political and economic crises. This project takes account of these realities while broadening the possibilities of creating safe spaces for artistic expression, horizontal cultural education and inspiring youth focused dialogues with EU based creative experts and producers through distinctive models that combine workshops with residency models and open studios. The themes draw upon the forest as a site of pluralistic ecologies of regeneration, multispecies coexistence, indigenous knowledge and post-war sustainability. In referencing the forest as a sensory architecture that is a world in itself (Ursula K. Le Guin), elements of social and environmental justice become entwined. The earliest sites of learning too have been in these dense grounds and so too have legacies of violence. Given the cultural relations’ experience of EUNIC Sri Lanka together with an extended range of local partners: interdisciplinary arts platform and festival Colomboscope; a foundation dedicated to world renowned Sri Lankan architect and sustainable local architecture Geoffrey Bawa Trust and Jaffna-based cultural and learning space, Kälam, this will propel innovative working environments and daring imagination. Located in three different provinces, the sites for the workshops and residencies will develop into spaces for new forms of mutual learning, for professionalization and upskilling of the participants.

Tanzania – Viraka freshi
"Viraka freshi", a Swahilli expression for upcycling fashion, is inspired by the dynamically evolving fashion industry in Tanzania. Fashion has grown into a big market, with a long value chain and a huge sector for employment, in particular for the youth. Important presentation platforms that reflect these developments are the major fashion shows that have emerged in the last five years. These platforms are the most important incubators for the future of emerging designers. Particularly interesting is the Second Hand Fashion circular economy. Used clothes, mainly from Europe, are blended with fashion traditions from local communities and local fabrics like Kanga or Kitenge or natural local materials like Sisal and tree bark. Transforming European second-hand source garments into a new recycled fashion product with an African touch not only adds value, but it also tells a story about post-colonial entanglement.
"Viraka freshi" aims to improve the standards in the second hand market segment through a residency programme of workshops, master classes, skill training and the development of ready-to-wear fashion collections as a brand with unique selling points and a digital fashion show. "Viraka freshi" is carried out by a network of Tanzanian civil society organizations, European Cultural Institutes and embassies, dedicated to promoting sustainability through fashion and by engaging women in particular. Special attention will be given to inclusive fashion for all body types.

Turkey (Ankara & Istanbul) – Sound of Europe #2
Sound of Europe stands as the celebration of European Music Day by offering a unique platform to emerging European and Turkish music groups. During three days and in three cities (Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir), young European and Turkish musicians are performing on stage and leading workshops and masterclasses with Turkish students/children. The first edition of the festival held in 10-11-12 June in Ankara and Istanbul, organized with the participation of 9 EUNIC members in partnership with the Çankaya and Kadiköy municipalities, was very well received by the public as well as culture professionnals, and proved to be very successful in showcasing new sounds and adressing young audience. The objective of this second edition, organized close to the 21st June, is to go further by anchoring this festival as the artistic and musical rendezvous between Europe and Turkey, with a unique cultural exchange platform. This will done by (i) expanding the number of EUNIC participants and securing the participation of the EUDel, (ii) extending the tour to a third city (iii) as well as developping real moments of exchange between European and Turkish musicians on one side (through joint performances) and European/Turkish musicians and Turkish audiences on the other side (thourgh masterclasses/ workshops, conferences designed with local partners as universities and associations etc.).

Uruguay – Break a Leg! Uruguay
Break a Leg! Uruguay is an international multidisciplinary inclusive project that promotes the democratisation of culture, offering an art residency for training and research where artists with and without disabilities will work together. The project culminates with the presentation of an exhibition of the process followed by an open discussion with the public. Break a Leg! Uruguay also invites future communicators to become familiar with the universal design and accesible communication, working together with the team and the artists of the project. It is structured in three stages during the period from February to May 2023 and involves different participants from abroad, with actions not only in Montevideo but also in the interior of the country.

  • Grant scheme
  • SDG
  • Children
  • Capacity building
  • Architecture
  • Co-creation
  • Community art
  • Cultural heritage
  • Cultural sector
  • Diversity
  • Education
  • Digital
  • Design

Co-funded by the European Union Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA). Neither the European Union nor EACEA can be held responsible for them.