FROM THE MARGINS. BETWEEN ART AND PARTICIPATION IN RURAL CONTEXTS

ACVic. Desde los márgenesA project presentation and debate about Art Centres that are developing activities in a rural contexts in Catalonia.
Participants: Cal Gras, Campo Adentro, Centre d'Art i Natura, CACIS Forn de Calç, Idensitat, Nau Coclea, Priorat Centre d'Art .

Activity organized by ACVic-SBG* as a result of the research Prismes by Marta Ricart.

08.04.2011 at 19.00 h
Place: ACVIC. C. Sant Francesc, 1 08500 Vic

- What reality do those who develop art projects find in contexts on the margins, away from the nucleus of decision and artistic display?
- In the course of our work as artists or managers, does art have any relationship with awareness, creating new audiences, or energising?
- How to build strategies for promotion and involvement in often dispersed and heterogeneous environments?
- Does the countryside need to create its own strategies and promotion?


Creators working in rural areas often find a very different reality from those living in more urban contexts. Rural areas, in spite of representing 90% of Catalan territory, are often invisible. The rural has been often associated with folklore and popular culture but in rural areas there are many varied artistic activities which, although developed in these environments, should not be marginalised or disregarded. There is no reason why so-called rural contexts should find themselves banished to the margins of creation.
Given the diverse and heterogeneous reality of the creative scene in our country's rural areas, From the Margins, a space for debate and sharing the different experiences of artists, promoters and managers making artistic and cultural proposals in rural areas, has been suggested.
The debate will be guided by artist, researcher and educator Marta Ricart which, beginning with the results of PRISMES (a creative and collaborative research which explores the dynamics, projects and realities of certain artistic proposals developed in rural areas), proposes an open approach to share, reflect and make visible what it means to create artistic processes in rural areas.

(*) ACVic-SBG is a program which connects art-nature-rural context. It is developed in collaboration between ACVic and the Municipality of Sant Bartomeu del Grau.

References from the participants: Cal Gras, Campo Adentro, Centre d’Art i Natura de Farrera, Cacis Forn de Calç, Idensitat, Nau Coclea, Priorat Centre d’Art.

Marta Ricart. Bachelor in Fine Arts. Faculty of Fine Arts. Facultad de Bellas artes. Universitat de Barcelona, Doctorate studies ( awaiting thesis presentation) . Participation in courses, conferences, seminars and workshops concerning education, art and community revitalisation in different contexts at Birmingham, Budapest, Sao Paulo. Professor of Visual education at secondary school. Associate Professor of Arts Education. Postgraduate Coordinator and trainer in Visual Culture Studies, Facultad de Bellas artes. Universitat de Barcelona. Teacher trainer in creative strategies for social activism.
b. Research grants: Jaume Bofill Foundation, Universitat de Barcelona, Conseil de la Europe, Polis Institute project , CUENCA. Participation in various research projects, conferences, congresses and seminars. Realisation of visual arts projects for community revitalisation with various collectives and different environments, and with different age groups throughout the Catalonian region. Creation and development of the project ACNE. Artistic revitalisation in rural areas. Contemporary art projects for rural revitalisation in the county of Solsones. Published author and contributor of articles for: Cuadernos de Pedagogía, Aula de Innovación Educativa, Fundación Pere Tarrés, Ediciones el Serbal, Fundación Jaume Bofill Colección Ventana Abierta, Cuadernos de Acción Social y Ciudadana Generalitat de Catalunya.

Founding partner of Teleduca. Education and Communication SCP, Co-founder of the Association Artibarri. Creative Communities for Social Change, Co-founder of the Association Àtic. Centro de Recursos y Actividades Creativas del Solsonès , Founder of the Association ACNE. Artistic Rural Revitalisation.

Cal Gras defines itself as Hostel of Culture, though in other places it may be labeled as an artists' residence, production centre, centre of creation, etc.. Although it mainly functions as a hostel, the users' objectives are
artistic, cultural or reflective, rather than tourism. The Hostel, the host, is sited in a old reformed village house with several rooms suitable for workshops and creative, experimental or research work, for meetings, rehearsals, exchanges, educational encounters, etc.. A house designed to provide temporary and communal accommodation  with several bedrooms, kitchen, living rooms, etc.. The Cultural Hostel, in terms of content, is understood in
the broadest sense to include anyone with an interest in culture, thought, art and living together. In the same way, this includes any language, discipline, knowledge, activity, etc.. Whenever and wherever possible, Cal Gras's function as a receiver and container for proposals will grow to be a disseminator of activities, and to propose its own activity aimed at involving the local area and surrounding territory. Residents may become involved in, and may start new activities: conferences, courses, workshops, performances, etc.. to enrich cultural activity in the surrounding area. http://www.calgras.cat

El Centre d’Art i Natura de Farrera is a work residence for artists and researchers from all over the world. Situated at an altitude of 1,360 m in the heart of the Catalan Pyrenees, 250 km from Barcelona and not far from Andorra, the village of Farrera (25 inhabitants) benefits from an exceptional and peaceful setting ideally suited to reflection, inspiration and creative work. Apart from its residential service, the Centre d’Art i Natura (CAN) organises grants and exchanges, courses and seminars, exhibitions of works from its art collection, publications and original editions, as well as performances and presentations.
Farrera’s CAN, which has been in operation since 1996, is a public initiative for local development at the service of creativity and research. The CAN is owned by the local council and administered by a non-profit association, the Friends of the Centre d’Art i Natura de Farrera. http://www.farreracan.cat

The centre of art and sustainability Forn de la Calç of Calders wants to be a meeting point between culture, history and sustainability. Surrounded by nature, in the heart of Catalonia, some ancient lime kilns have been restored because of their uniqueness, their good condition and their industrial and architectural value. Our objective is to establish a sustainable modern art centre in the region of Bages, bearing in mind that the lime kilns will be the guiding line of our project. This centre wants to focus on the research, the production and the exhibition of cultural projects, including all the conceptual sides and shapes of modern art, especially those ones related to ecology and environment. We have taken into account the speacial features of this centre: the old quarry, a well preserved environment, a good relationship between environment and human activity and the singularity of the lime kilns. Distinguishing characteristic of this Centre. http://www.cacis.cat

Nau Côclea is a center of production and presentation of research and contemporary creation. The artists we host work with images, sounds and words and as forms and languages of thought. From the idea to realisation, we focus on the processes over the products. We are rooted in the Empordà region, and we always look for the natural and human point of contact between human creativity and the natural environment. http://www.naucoclea.com

IDENSITAT is an art project that investigates ways to influence the field of public space through creative proposals regarding the location and the territory from the physical and social dimension. Established as a place for production and research network, from art, experiencing new forms of involvement and interaction in social space. The set of defined activities that promote the production of projects, from the combination of open call and invitation, in order to promote proposals for specific contexts, for educational activities, proposed certain local groups and developed in relation to any of the activities of the group, and documentation projects, participating as a work in other contexts. These projects are presented by communication and dissemination activities such as debates, exhibitions and publications. http://www.idensitat.net

Priorat Centre d'Art began its activities in the summer of 2006 with the aim of establishing a contemporary art centre in the Priorat region. As a prelude to this future centre, a series of lines of research have been established and launched which will define the facilities, and which have been, and continue to be, developed gradually; a series of actions allowing the introduction of concepts and multidisciplinary formalisations inserted within contemporary culture.
Its objectives are structured around the three axes of diffusion, production and research within the field of contemporary culture and especially the visual arts, developing a series of actions in order to strengthen them, and give them the appropriate coverage. From the interweaving and balancing of these three general concepts must arise the characteristic and differentiating features of this centre. http://www.prioratcentredart.cat

“CAMPO ADENTRO” is a project that examines the role of territories, geopolitics, culture and identity in the relationship between the city and the countryside in Spain today.
Its objective is to launch a cultural strategy in support of rural life over a period of three years (2010-2013), specifically made up of an international conference, artistic production through a residency program, an exhibition and a publication. The project provides artists, farmers, intellectuals, rural development agents, policymakers, curators and art critics, amongst others from the rural and urban spheres, with an open platform for presenting their research and practice. The content is gathered here before it is conveyed to the rest of society. http://www.campoadentro.es

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