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26 Jan 2010

Conference: 'Being Europe: Crisis? What Crisis?' in Bratislava

Space projects | Residency lab | store

Being Europe: Crisis? What Crisis?
Space projects | Residency lab | store and the Heinrich-Boell-Foundation Brandenburgh


Conference: 28th – 29th January 2010


+ 421 911 33 11 87
+ 49 331 200578 20

Space Gallery
Velehradska 7/A

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The conference 'Being Europe: Crisis? What Crisis?' opens up new vistas on Europe 20 years after the fall of the Iron Curtain. Under the designation 'Crisis? What crisis?' we bring into focus various perspectives on European changes in the last 20 years and the current crises. The title – taken from a cover of Supertramp´s LP from 1975 – can ironically be interpreted in diverse ways. For example as a synonym for a non-existing crisis or an attempt to disavow the existence of crises. It also describes the crucial questions for this conference: Are we really having a crisis? Are we even confronted with different crises? Or do we deny their existence and profoundness? What can we do to solve possible crises?

20 years have passed since the Velvet Revolution. Since then a globalized economy within a free society of politically responsible citizens seems to have grown. In these years societies in Europe came into transformation, new democratic systems have emerged and social reforms have passed. The European Union has fundamentally changed. At the same time it faces several crises. Some of them seem to be obvious. First of all a deep economic crisis. And also the crisis of climate change and energy resources which affect not only Europe but the whole world. But what about European culture and art? What about the crisis of the art market and the lack of support of culture and art in the new member states of the European Union? And do we also have a crisis of the democratic system? Sure enough democratic governmental institutions do not work efficiently in many member states of the European Union. The current constitution of democratic systems in European countries is confronted with a loss of political impetus. Public discussions of political issues seem to get less important. Most decisions are taken by only a few opinion leaders in national or supranational parliaments and governments. The level of participation of the citizens is low, their involvement in the process of decision-making weak. Nevertheless, political decisions taken today in times of crises will be eminently important for the future shape of our political, economical, cultural and ecological system. What Europe decides these days touches its being and the every day live of millions of people. Again: Crisis? What Crisis?


Thursday, 28th January 2010

19.30 Opening
Juraj Carny (art critic, curator, gallery owner. Space projects | Residency lab | store; Bratislava)
Inka Thunecke (director Heinrich-Boell-Foundation Brandenburg; Potsdam Germany)
20.00 Challenge of multiple crisis
Prof. Ulrich Brand (Institute for Political Science, University of Vienna)
20.45 Crisis of the economy
Prof. Joachim Becker (Institute for International Economics and Development, Vienna University of Economics and Business)
22.00 Art Performance by Richard Fajnor (to be confirmed)

Friday, 29th January 2010

9.30 Challenges and crisis of democracy
Prof. Oliver Marchart (Department of Sociology, University of Lucerne)
Martin Bútora (sociologist, Honorary President of the Institute for Public Affairs) (to be confirmed)
11.30 Crisis of the institutions
Isolde Charim (philosopher and publicist, assistant lecturer University of Vienna)
Marek Adamov (director of Stanica cultural space; Žilina)
13.30 Break
14.30 Art – no Crisis?
Ruth Noack (author and curator)
Jakob Racek (cultural manager and curator, Art Today Association - Center for Contemporary Art; Plovdiv Bulgaria)
16.00 Discussion and Final Comments

Please register for the conference via mail

The event is part of the European project ATLANTIS - Hidden Histories – New Identities. European Art 20 years after the Iron Curtain of the Heinrich-Boell-Foundation Brandenburg.

The conference has been funded with support from the European Commission. This communication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.