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In the middle of the roaring debate on the future of Lagerhuset, the Warehouse, a building in central Göteborg housing small-scale independent cultural organizations, publishers, and cultural journals, the digital journal Alba and Tidskriftsverkstan i Väst arranged a debate on cultural policy in the House of Literature (located in Lagerhuset).
It couldn’t be better timing.
But let’s start from the beginning. The old warehouse built in beginning of 1900 was for a long time a toll free warehouse for goods stored waiting for taxation to continue into the city. The building was then empty for a long time but in 1999 a group of small-scale publishers moved in together with Nätverkstan, Tidskriftsverkstan i Väst, the journals Ord&Bild, Glänta, and Paletten.
Other small businesses moved in, such as photographers, psychologists, architects, and editors.
In 2013 Frilagret started its cultural space for young people with dialogue processes and an active group of young cultural-interested people setting the agenda, an organization owned by the municipality. In October the same year the House of Literature opened its doors for readings, discussions on literature, space for writing, debates and discussions with authors, another of the municipality owned activities in the building.
And in March 2014 it was clear that the landlord, another part of the municipality, their own real-estate company Higab is chock-raising the rent for those in the house negotiating their contracts. One publishing house is leaving already in June.
The cluster of small-scale cultural organizations and entrepreneurs has taking long to create. And it can be destroyed in a second. No one can afford 30-35% higher rent.
With one hand the municipality is investing in a cultural house, while the other is pulling the rug under the feet of all the cultural organizations already in the building.
Of all the seminars, conferences, public debates and discussions on the cultural and creative city over the last ten years, Higab must have missed them all.
And they missed yesterday’s debate as well. Where are they? Are they at all concerned of the context and society they work in?
Categories: Art and Business Artistic practice Blogg Creative Industries Creative spaces Cultural Journals Cultural Policy Culture-led Development Economy Entrepreneurship Innovation Literature Medialab Music Nätverkstan Regional Development
Etiketter:Artist, Artistic practice, Creative Industries, Creativity, crisis, Cultural economy, Cultural Policy, Cultural Project, Development, Economy, Education, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, Literature, Renewal, Social entrepreneur
DIY (Do It Yourself) is almost like an invitation, a command, to not sit around and wait for things to happen. Instead: Take Action!
Meet up with colleagues, experts, friends, academia, practice, interested folks; create a space, combine your expertise, and solve a problem, found a new idea or make innovations.
DIY Days Gothenburg, taking place this week (18-26th of January), is full of creation, ideas, hot spots, talks, and exchanges. It’s an interesting combination of low thresholds, an open and inviting attitude, and a willingness to share.
The goal is set high: How do we create a sustainable city for the future?
Described under the theme ”Future Cities – Sustainable and Playful Design with focus on Water” people pitch in their ideas such as Tikitut, the community-based tourism or Halo, working on sustainable architecture, or the mix between Hackathons, game industry meet ups, world cafés, crowdfunding, and mentorships and advice.
So take action and pay a visit!
Today the Scene for Literature opened, or the Literature House, as Madeleine Bergmark put it in her opening speech of the inauguration in Lagerhuset (Warehouse).
The road to a new literary scene in Göteborg has been bumpy and particularly around where it should be located. Should a new house be built or is it a better idea to let it rest among already existing initiatives? And if so, with which existing scene? Glances were sent to Norway, where an ambitious new House for Literature in Oslo was opened in 2007.
In 2011 Ingrid Elam, a well-known literature critic in Sweden, got the assignment from the Administration of Culture in the City of Göteborg to investigate the possibilities of establishing a House for Literature in Göteborg.
The reason was that the conditions for literature are changing in a rapid pace and establishing a scene for literature seemed like a proper cultural policy action (also on state level this was done in 2012, a public investigation called Läsandets kultur, Culture of Reading).
Ingrid Elam came to four different suggestions, where two of them was weighing pros and cons of building a new house or building on already existing initiatives with focus on the independent and small-scale literary scene.
Lagerhuset (Warehouse), an old warehouse in central Göteborg right by the canal, for many felt like the natural location for a scene for literature. The building is already part of a vivid small-scale and independent cultural and literary scene housing several cultural journals and small publishing houses; a larger membership-based production space for journals; the Poetry Festival; education; and in the ground floor the scene for young creators, Frilagret. It’s a house that since 1999 host small cultural organizations with focus on cultural journals and literature.
It was also one of Ingrid Elam’s four suggestions, although not the main proposal. The Cultural Committee decided to place the House for Literature in an already existing structure: Lagerhuset. The House is organizationally under the City Library, they got two trial years and 1 million SEK (approximately 116000 euro) per year. Then the idea is that the independent scene in Göteborg takes over.
Categories: Art Art and Business Artistic practice Blogg Creative Industries Creative spaces Cultural Journals Cultural Policy Culture-led Development Economy Education Entrepreneurship Innovation Kulturverkstan Literature Medialab Music
Rain has been pouring down about once every hour today. Heavy rains. The weather forecast has been followed with extreme care at Nätverkstan, glued by the radio most of the day and running outside to try to follow the clouds’ movement.
But half an hour before screening the first of three shows of art- and experimental films on outdoor screening, the clouds disappeared and the sky was blue. Around sixty people had gathered in the restaurant at Lagerhuset, sitting outside to have a drink and see art film. And as the sun set out the coastline in the West and it finally got darker, curator Åsa Falewicz presented her project Where Dreams Cross and her film put together by a set of nine films produced by different artists.
Screening windows for art- and experimental film are changing. The white cube is not any longer the only place where experimental moving images can – or will – be shown. Where Dreams Cross wants to explore new exhibit places for art film and video with the aim to reach a wider audience.
Nätverkstan Borderland has started in line with these ideas. We want to explore more screening possibilities for art- and experimental film, and are starting both open outdoor film screening together with an online window. And today was the nerv-racking start of a series of three shows. Tonight Åsa Falewicz with Where Dreams Cross gave it all a flying start!
The project is a cooperation between Nätverkstan Medialab (Medieverkstäderna), School of Film Directing at University of Gothenburg, Pustervik and Where Dreams Cross. Medieverkstäderna has cultural strategic funding from Region Västra Götaland.
”Actually, I am keeping the schedule fuzzy”
Actor, filmmaker and entrepreneur Prakash Belawadi present a packed schedule of meetings, as we start a week of pursuing the collaboration between cultural organizations in Västra Götaland, Sweden, and Karnataka, India. The schedule is constantly changing, adding new meetings, moving others to another day, depending on when people can meet us and to achieve the most on days starting around nine, bedtime around midnight.
The cooperation is within several fields; film and film education, media workshops, performing arts, storytelling, and social entrepreneurship. We meet the newly set up government run Film Academy in Bangalore, the Hubba Festival, Suchitra Film Society and Suchitra Cinema and Cultural Academy, Center for Film and Drama, filmmakers and a poet to discuss the film situation in Bangalore.
A delegation from Museum of World Cultures, Nätverkstan and the Secretery for Cultural Affairs in Västra Götaland are on a five days visit to pursue the cooperation. In October the Göteborg International Film Festival will visit Mumbai and Bangalore and in December the School of Film Directing at Göteborg University will go to Bangalore with the aim of starting long-term cooperation.
”We need a new Georgian Utopia”. Magda Guruli, Curator and Artist, meet us in her home in Tbilisi. 1970s and 80s was a very artisticly interesting period in Georgia, she tells us. Many interesting initiatives with artistic high quality were taken. After the Soviet period, this infrastructure fell and everything needs to be rebuilt. A whole new infrastructure is needed. This takes time. Perhaps the gap between systems will allow for new ideas, a transformed artistic scene? ”In the system of Art, we are still in the mentality of Soviet. We need something completely new”.
Many Artist have their own NGO, as the platform to work from. They have their offices at home. The driving force is to do Art with high quality, but also be part of transformation of society.
Human Rights Center is a center working with issues like freedom of speach, discrimination, injustice. Through newsletters, research, workshops, training and projects they want to work for mutual understandning between ethnic groups in Georgia and put the focus on injustices performed by the Georgian government. Informing the public is as important as working with target groups like refugees. They offer services like legal support and counselling in entrepreneurship.
”Through Art you can make the changes otherwise not possible.”
The visit to Georgia is part of the project EKAE2009, run by Natverkstan and financed by the Swedish Institute.
Etiketter:Artist, Artistic practice, Creativity, crisis, Cultural economy, Cultural Journal, Cultural Policy, Cultural Project, Democracy, Development, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, Flexibility, Georgia, Globalization, Innovation, International exchange, New economy, Renewal, Resources
How do we look at work and employment? What is our relationship to working? How does time linger after people left? How do our perception and dreams change as we grow up? Are we prepared to do anything to reach our goals? What is meaningful work?
Skifte is a collective digital exhibition with filmmakers, animators, photographers, artists and poets, who all reflect on the theme work. Nine pieces showing different aspects and expressions, putting forward questions rather than answers. The exhibition is part of Medieverkstäderna i Väst, a collective of digital workshops in Region Västra Götaland, where members are visual artists, editors, photographers, poets and film makers.
Curator has been Stina Karlsdóttir Vestrin, who is also a student at Kulturverkstan. In the folder coming with the exhibition she writes:
”The fact that our work is one of the things forming us, building our identity and creating a community in a social context, we can all agree on, work is a central part of our lives. I would like, with this exhibition, to do some pounces in everyday working life and lift reflections around its structure. What is a job? What is a good job? Why do we work and what makes an honourable day’s work? The same occupation can in some cases be a job and in others not. In today’s society it’s more and more important to be adaptable and flexible on a more and more demanding labour market at the same time as the boarders between working life and leisure is erased. Working conditions is constantly shifting and each time as its problems to solve.
The war of ants has disappeared from our TVs. The digital era has its own noise, its own war, other ants. Internet is today an obvious part of labour market. Fifteen years ago you hardly knew what it was, yet it has since changed labour for many people all over the world. It also affects those workers who don’t have access to computers. A shift has taken place. Changes can sneak on you slowly without us understanding a shift is on its way. What happens to our jobs? The new is growing out of the old, breaking out from it, against it, want to be free. It is in this contradiction that we find other ways and tramp our own tracks.”
The exhibition will be touring in Region Västra Götaland and is on Internet 25 of April to 24 of May 2009. Look at www.skifte.se and click for English. Download (in Swedish) the catalogue here: skifte_katalog.
Etiketter:Animation, Artist, Artistic collective workshop, Artistic practice, Creativity, Development, Digitization, Employment, Flexibility, Labour, Medialab, Medieverkstäderna, photo, Shift, Skifte, Västra Götaland, Work
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