memory. culture. art.
Memory, culture and art
The interdisciplinary project “Memory, Culture and Art: Remembrance and Dealing with the past after 1989” opens a dialogue between arts, culture and science on discourses and politics of individual and collective memories in post-socialist Europe after 1989. Project countries are Poland, Germany, Czech Republic, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosova. Despite the differing historical contexts of these countries in Central Europe and former Yugoslavia, people and societies face similar experiences of war, flight, expulsion and (ethnic) post-war conflicts.

The project consists of five interlinked parts:
1. International conference in Berlin (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin) and roundtable discussion (Goethe-Institute, Belgrade)
2. Workshops with artists
3. Interview project with leading representatives from art and culture in Central Europe
4. Publication and internet documentation
5. Exhibition in Berlin (Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin)

In July 2008 the project started with an international conference and a first workshop with the participating artists and scholars in the Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin. The focus of the conference was on the following questions: “How are the societies of Central-Eastern Europe and South Eastern Europe dealing with their past? What does European memory culture mean and how are artists dealing with memory culture? Are there common ways in Europe to remember the different and similar experiences of war, flight, expulsion and (ethnic) post-war conflicts? Is it possible to define any limits regarding the common memory culture?”
In the workshop the young artists reflected on individual and collective memories in their countries and across boundaries using different artistic approaches like photography, video installations, drawings and sources of information such as family interviews, letters, war diaries, oral histories, and personal remembrances.

In November 2008, a second workshop and roundtable discussion “Do we need art for remembrance?” in Belgrade aimed to further examine national and transnational cultural memory and remembrance politics in post-war former Yugoslavia. High-ranking participants from the artistic world discussed the role of art in dealing with the past and the culture of memory through their creative expressions. The panel was based on the idea that art and artists convey important social and political messages by challenging, subverting or reinforcing particular ideologies. A third workshop took place in Berlin in March 2009. The participating artists discussed the project results and prepared the exhibition HEISS ODER KALT, to be seen 16.–31. October 2009.

An interview project with leading representatives of the arts and culture sector focussing on Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic deepened the dialogue and exchange on different experiences in dealing with the past, with collective memory and identity formation in the participating countries and across boundaries.

A paperback, to be released by the publisher “transcript Verlag” in 2009, will contain 1. the project results of the young artists on flight, expulsion and war experiences, 2. academic texts and 3. the interviews with representatives of the arts and culture sector from Central and South Eastern Europe.

The project was realised by Network Migration in Europe. Network Migration in Europe is an European initiative of migration experts which conducts educational, cultural and scientific projects.

The project is sponsored by:
Allianz Kulturstiftung/Allianz Cultural Foundation
Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung/Agency for Civic Education
Stiftung zur Aufarbeitung der SED-Diktatur

Partners of the project are:
Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin
Goethe-Institute Belgrade
KARTA Centre, Warsaw
Leipziger Kreis. Forum für Wissenschaft und Kunst, Leipzig
The Documentation Centre Wars 1991-1999, Belgrade
Centre for Cultural Decontamination, Belgrade
Youth Initiative for Human Rights, branches in Belgrade, Sarajevo and Prishtina
Antikomplex, Prague

We are looking forward to your comments on the project.


Flaka Haliti
Flaka Haliti
Katja Eydel
Katja Eydel
Alen Hebilović
Alen Hebilović
Vedrana Madzar
Vedrana Madzar
Maja Obradović
Maja Obradović
Nihad Nino Pušija
Nihad Nino Pušija
Neeltje Reijerman
Neeltje Reijerman
Piotr Żyliński
Piotr Żyliński
Ulrike Kuschel
Ulrike Kuschel
Mladen Miljanović
Mladen Miljanović
Berlin Conference and Workshop
Berlin Conference and Workshop
July 2008
>Belgrade Roundtable Discussion
Belgrade Roundtable Discussion
November 2008
Exhibition
Exhibition
Publication
Publication