A note on Brexit and the role of IN SITU cultural cooperation in the European Union

On June 27th the IN SITU network gathered in Sotteville-lès-Rouen to work at the IN SITU Platform 2014-2017 and the new international cooperation project IN SITU ACT 2016-2020, both granted by the European Commission and involving 25 partners, 3 of whom are UK-based cultural institutions. During this meeting the network, deeply concerned about the Brexit decision felt the need to share the following considerations with international colleagues and the local, national and international authorities that follow our activities.

1. Brexit will not affect the development of ACT and Platform projects, where our British partners Hull Freedom festival, Norfolk and Norwich festival, UZ Arts, bring and will continue to bring an enormous added value. We hope that Brexit is not going to affect the possibility and eligibility of Bristish artists to take part to our activities in the future, since British artistic scene has represented an unbelievable “creative soil”, crucial for the development of the arts in Europe.

2. Brexit speaks about disconnection between people and governments and the lack of a common vision for communities, cities and eventually countries. This will enhance IN SITU’s ongoing reflection on culture, public space and audience engagement towards a higher and more integrated work with our local communities, from urban to rural. We believe the only solution to isolation and nationalistic fragmentation is to consider CULTURE as the asset to improve European citizens’ life conditions at a human, social and economical level, to lead them to a more conscious civic life and aware of a human based European project.

3. Brexit teaches us that Europe is in continuous and sometimes unpredictable change and this change needs to be governed by a new generation of European leaders, a pact between older and younger generations to put culture, education and human development as a priority of a future Europe.

IN SITU will continue to be active on this level through a series of seminars and the creation of a think tank and will take into account that this could be the occasion to act together, to build at a European, national and local level a renewed unity where European cultural operators could be the mediators of cooperation and dialogue within and beyond geographical and institutional borders.

IN SITU is een belangrijk Eeuropees festivalnetwerk waar Oerol in participeeert. Dit netwerk stimuleert de ontwikkeling van nieuwe vormen van theater en kunst in de openbare ruimte. Oerol is een van de negen kernleden, met daarnaast een groep van dertien kleinere co-organisatoren. Het netwerk bestrijkt negentien landen in Europa. De onderlinge uitwisseling van kunstenaars en projecten zal de komende jaren groeien.

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