The Story of CORNERS
Chapter 4: Co-creations
From the beginning, CORNERS set out to collect stories from one part of the Europe and tell them in another. The research & development period focused on devising and producing new collaborative artistic projects. We produced 16 CORNERS artworks which we preferred to call co-creations. CORNERS co-creations are not finished artefacts, but rather open structures or templates ready to receive input from local communities in the areas CORNERS visits. Our artists designed tools to enable local communities to fill the works with their stories, experiences, creativity, joy, concerns… In this way, CORNERS artworks are co-created with local audiences in each place they travel.
After creating the basic structure for their co-creations, our artists identified the type of communities they wanted to work with: kids, elderly people, homeless or displaced people, neighbourhood groups… Before presenting the works in each place, our artists arrived 10 days before to meet the people who then co-created the works with them through a participative process. In each place the co-creations gathered new stories and were shaped to respond to each specific site.
Through their work, our artists encouraged people to share their memories, get involved in producing artworks, re-connect with their neighbours and experience creations by people from other European places around the same topic.
Addressing the issues of local communities
Each CORNERS co-creation focused on the neighbourhoods we worked in and the people living there. Among a group of very diverse people, they searched for the topics that connected them, aiming to collectively find a creative way to articulate these.
Photo: Richard Kenworthy
by: Siniša Labrović (HR), Elvin Flamingo (Jarosław Czarnecki) (PL), Helena Wikström (SE), Davor Sanvincenti (HR), Juan Aizpitarte (ES)
Working with different communities, local artists and cultural organisations from a specific neighbourhood, In Between builds a wider picture of the relationship between citizens and their neighbourhoods, creating situations that increase communication within and between smaller groups in the community. By listening and sharing personal and collective stories and exploring everyday life, the artists collectively re-create social memory and reveal what is important to local people. Through their work, and together with local communities, the public becomes collaborator and public space becomes a potential creative site.
Sister of Another Mama
by Mila Pavićević (HR), Joseba Irazoki (ES), SIMKA – Simon Häggblom and Karin Lind (SE)
Sister of Another Mama focuses on the media, specifically newspapers. The artists create a temporary editorial space and reach out to audiences through artistic interventions in public spaces in collaboration with the local community. Together they create a unique newspaper that is distributed alongside local newspapers.
These newspapers go against the dominant paradigm of a traditional newspaper and include fictional imaginary, colourful pictures and words that do not offer useful information, instead producing questions that provoke the imagination.
Collecting and sharing stories
Some CORNERS co-creations focus on collecting and sharing stories, developing small subjective archives of invisible or everyday practices. These archives revealed how different communities (re)interpret or (re)appropriate that which is common to all.
by Lucyna Kolendo (PL), Bojan Mucko (HR), Julie Myers (GB)
[VOICEOVER] is a growing archive of personal stories connected to social, environmental and industrial change. It has been developed in collaboration with local community groups and individuals through a series of mapping workshops and live radio broadcasts which gathered and re-told personal stories: a child’s tale of seeing the smoke from a factory in Taranto; the memory of an abandoned beach in Brindisi; the description of a nightshift in a Middlesbrough steel plant; dancing in a social club in Ashington… Conversations, readings, music and field recordings present an assemblage of fragments that are both specific and universal.
Oh my Home – Lost & Found
by Saadia Hussain (SE), Lalya Gaye (GB), Ixone Ormaetxe (SE)
Oh my Home - Lost & Found is a public space installation, and a series of workshops and performances that address the notion of “home” from a broad perspective: the domestic, the migrant and the contested. Through an installation in public space composed of familiar elements that resemble home, the artists invite the public to reclaim their public space as a meeting point to approach “home” from geographical, political and philosophical perspectives.
CORNERS recognised that young people were also participants of our co-creations, and their creativity and appreciation for art should be encouraged. Through various workshop-based co-creations, young people were provided with tools and mentors to help them create their own artworks. In many cases, our artists invited kids from different social groups to work together, encouraging a sense of solidarity, and through positive expereinces, increased their awareness of the social reality that surrounds us.
by Nedyalko Delchev (BG), Maciej Salamon (PL)
Birdhouse Gallery builds a European gallery network. Over 10 days, our artists helped kids to build their own miniature galleries in the shape of birdhouses and to exhibit pieces of artwork inside. The workshop was followed by an exhibition organised by the kids themselves – from creating the display of the galleries, to making invitations and public announcements. Birdhouse Gallery aims to encourage imagination, develop young people's creative ideas, improve their artistic skills and strengthen their appreciation for the arts.
In Transition / Papyrint
by Borja Ruiz (ES), Kajsa Sandström (SE), Nils Personne (SE), Primož Bezjak (SI), ŠKART Dragan Protić & Djordje Balmazović (RS)
Kids from the local community and five artists from different disciplines create and present a live performance through two-weeks of joyful and creative work. Young people’s stories from the corners of Europe are the basis for a workshop with music, movement, poetry and visual arts.
Each artist leads a workshop in their own discipline, giving young people the opportunity to try different artistic practices and forms of expression. The young people respond to stories from previous corners that Papyrint has visited and develop their own through poetry, music, dance and paper-theatre.
For some CORNERS co-creations, artists gathered stories from different places across Europe connected to specific topics and created work for exhibition that then toured around Europe through CORNERS events.
Put Yourself in My Place
by Ida Hansson (SE), Milijana Babić (HR)
by Kataryna Radchenko (UA), Sergiy Petluk (UA), Oskar Östergren (SE), Lena Stenberg (SE)
Four artists from Ukraine and Sweden researched light, firstly as a physical phenomenon and then as a social, ethnic and cultural one.
Their exploration started from the north of Sweden, and moved to the south of Ukraine. The artists spent time with the Sami people in the north and the locals in the south of Ukraine, people who play a minor role from a geopolitical perspective, but who are an integral part of their Homeland.
In the next and final chapter…
…find out how the audience participated in the making of and presentation of CORNERS co-creations.
Photo: Richard Kenworthy