Words of Welcome

Dr. Christina Weiss


A warm welcome to the ‘Res Artis 05 Berlin’ conference delegates from the State Minister of the Federal Chancellery for Media and Culture, Dr. Christina Weiss.

Historically, festivals have brought us examples of culture from other countries, fairs and exhibition halls show work from around the globe and international artists are represented through orchestra, concerts and dance companies.

In this time of globalization, however, the meaningful international exchanges among artists has become of utmost importance. The opportunity for a real dialogue about experiences and visions central to the work of artists is very often missing. The
so-called “cultural exchanges” are all too often a show and tell for finished products and productions, rarely encouraging open discussions.

I am therefore pleased that this conference entitled “Sharing Cultures & Social Change” is convened in Berlin, bringing together representatives from a wide variety of organizations and projects in Asia, Europe and around the globe.

This conference offers a platform for future networks, workshops and co-productions. It can also act as an opportunity for regional and local initiatives to be reinforced through trans-continental forum of ideas. All this taking place in the spectacular setting of this year’s Asia-Pacific Week in Berlin.

I wish all 160 participants from 42 countries an exciting time in Berlin and hope that this conference will be productive and successful for the arts and the artists.


Klaus Wowereit
 

Greetings form the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, to the international conference of residential art centers ‘Res Artis 05 Belrin’

Berlin welcomes the participants in the first Asia-Europe conference of residential arts centers to Germany’s capital city. Berlin is international and cosmopolitan. Above all, however, Berlin is a city that offers space, scope, and potential to creative minds.

I am thus delighted that representatives of many artists’ residencies from all over the world are coming to Berlin for the “Res Artis 05 Berlin” conference to exchange ideas and experiences and to talk to one another. The conference offers many opportunities to examine new models for working and living in the light of cultural differences, to discuss the prospects for transcontinental cultural projects in the “global age,” and to thereby widen our view of the world’s diversity and the abundance of forms of expression.

In this era of enhanced mobility, the many “art factories” coming to Berlin for this meeting are united by the idea and the goal of providing residencies and development opportunities for artists that would be almost unimaginable under market conditions. This makes them venues not only for international cultural exchange, but for the promotion of creative work.

Berlin offers many starting points for a look at the circumstances in which
artistic creativity can thrive. The ufaFabrik is one of these. Once a place where dreams were captured on celluloid – on the grounds of the former ufa film studios printing facility – it has helped to make new and uncommon ideas reality for 25 years now. However, this conference will also be meeting in many other centers known for their innovative approach and offering the right setting for creative work.

I hope that all of you attending the conference will enjoy not only a thought-provoking meeting, but an eventful stay in Berlin.


Clayton Campbell

President, Res Artis | Co-Executive Director, 18th Street Art Center

On the Opening of the Res Artis 10th General Meeting

On behalf of the board of directors of Res Artis I am pleased to welcome the many delegates who have traveled from around the world to the Res Artis 10th General Meeting. As we officially open this extraordinary conference, I am thinking of how Res Artis’ inaugural meeting in 1993 was also in Berlin. At that time twenty one persons from nine countries were present. Today, ten meetings later, there are 160 delegates from 40 countries, and representatives from 10 foundations and agencies who support artistic and cultural exchange. The growth of Res Artis, and the growth in the field of artist communities and networks is a parallel phenomena and I cannot help but view this development as the emergence of a significant and important component of the arts and culture landscape worldwide.

I am a practicing visual artist since 1970. As president of Res Artis I occasionally remark it is also significant that many of its members are practicing artists who see the need for community and seek it out. As artists, we have enlarged our practice by taking on the tasks of critical writing, curating, arts administration and fundraising, and in particular the promotion of international artistic exchange. The multi-tasking artist is a newer model, born of a sensibility of self sufficiency and taking responsibility for the welfare of the group. Our values are evolving; we believe in the bridging of cultural, political, class and religious divides, the promotion of peace, the beauty and intensity of creativity, and to this end we work to build organizations such as Res Artis.

If there is an over arching theme for Res Artis during its tenth meeting, it is that there is no ‘center’ which is dominant. Rather Res Artis is a fluid and mobile network of like minded persons. I am incredibly optimistic about the future of Res Artis, seeing all of you here. I know many of you have traveled a long ways, worked hard to raise the money to come here, and are committed to growing this unique association of creative communities. We are learning from each other, how to organize effectively and with cooperation; to acknowledge what is unique and special about diverse cultures; and to treasure those differences. I can look back at Res Artis, and see it how it has matured into a true international association.

This is my last general meeting as president, and to that end I wish mention a few of the numerous persons who have helped Res Artis, worked for its future, and given unstintingly of their time, freely and generously. First, to Emmanuelle du Montgazon, who invited my organization, the 18th Street Arts Center of Los Angeles, to become a part of Res Artis. Then to Michael Haerdter, whose indefatigable advocacy of Res Artis was a huge inspiration. To Laurens Schumacher, who as president of Res Artis shepearded its transition from an informal association to a legal foundation based in the Netherlands. And then to O.P. Jain, who hosted an extraordinary meeting in Delhi which I will never forget, and who became a mentor for me as my role in the organization expanded. I have had the pleasure of sharing the executive duties with my colleague and Vice president of Res Artis, Rudolf Brünger, who has done a magnificent job organizing this conference. Maria Tuerlings, secretary of Res Artis, has been an unfailing voice of calm and reason. The current board members who have helped with the thinking and planning for Res Artis future deserve mention You will meet them throughout this conference, and so I wish to thank Nick Tsoutas, Deborah Obalil, Margaret Shiu Tan, Dinh Q Le, N’Gone Fall, Varun Jain, Marika Blossfeldt, Hanneke Fruehauf, Laurent Deveze, and Richard Perram. We especially wish to thank The Asia-Europe Foundation, the Prince Barnard Fund, and the Ford Foundation who have helped to fund the travel costs of many of the delegates, and to the numerous agencies, venues, and persons who have made contributions to this conference. Lastly, to the many other persons and organizations who have made past contributions to Res Artis, I express my appreciation for their generous support.

Finally, I wish to mention our former board member, Paul Bardwell, who passed away last year. Paul was with us in Australia at the 9th general meeting, and we did not know how ill he really was. We all were shocked and deeply saddened when we received word of his passing. Paul epitomized the selfless spirit of Res Artis members, and had tireless energy and interest in what other people from other lands were doing. He felt that the movement of artists from diverse communities bridged cultural divides and helped to promote world peace. We miss Paul during this meeting, and I dedicate the 10th Res Artis General meeting to the memory of Paul Bardwell.

At this point, it is time to open the conference. I trust over the next four days you will make new friends, form creative collaborations, be inspired and have your worldview expanded by contact with the amazing group of persons assembled here. The Res Artis 10th General Meeting now begins!


Rudolf Brünger

Conference Convener

Vice-President, Res Artis | Executive Director, ufaFabrik

On behalf of the team of ufaFabrik Berlin International Cultural Center I would like to welcome you to the 10th general meeting of Res Artis, the worldwide network of artist residencies.

It is with great pleasure to see that so many colleagues from across the globe have accepted our invitation to gather in Berlin. The Res Artis network has accomplished its first full circle, coming back to Berlin after 12 years. We welcome all of you to celebrate this anniversary.

In the past two decades, cultural networking has become common throughout Europe. Today you can count the networks by the hundreds, all of them having their own focus. What is special about Res Artis is that this initiative has grown into a truly global cross-cultural forum with an amazing diversity of members. More than 250 organizations in 55 countries, many of them born from citizen activities, are now associated. Res Artis is a unique, nongovernmental platform across all creative art forms, where independent grassroots arts initiatives meet together with established governmental arts institutions, funding bodies and dedicated individuals.

The conference title “Sharing Cultures and Social Change” refers to the role that artist residencies and independent “art factories” play in cultural exchange and contemporary art making. Residential arts centers support artists’ mobility and provide the necessary means for artistic and creative production. The projects often impact their social surroundings and can create social change.

The design for this meeting was inspired by previous general meetings of Res Artis in New Delhi, Los Angeles, Helsinki and in Sydney and Melbourne. Res Artis o5 Berlin is organized as a citywide conference that includes keynote lectures and panels, case studies and excursions. We provide face-to-face talks in small groups, fresh information on current development and tools for artist’s mobility and we will hear some personal views of international funders. We will debate curatorial practices and innovative grant making and will introduce you to some of the key operators for intercultural programmes in Berlin. Enough free time will be left to experience the dynamic cultural life in Berlin.

I am grateful to the support of our partner, the Asia-Europe Foundation, and want to thank Ms. Chulamanee Chartsuwan and Ms. Marie Le Sourd for their confidence and enduring support to help us to fulfill the particular aspiration of this conference: to provide a platform of exchange between cultural movers in Asia and in Europe. I am delighted to welcome the 45 delegates who have taken the long journey to represent their respective initiatives throughout Asia. We want to reflect upon the transitory processes in our regions and the potential for artistic cooperation and sustainable partnerships. The conference aims to foster the networking process between the old and many new initiatives.

Among the members of Res Artis, there is a growing number of performing arts residencies and multidisciplinary artist-run spaces. The conference dedicates two sessions to discuss the specific needs for artist groups and collective work in the performing arts.

Peter Legemann of Broellin will take you on an excursion on Sunday in to the country north of Berlin. We will visit Schloss Broellin, a fine example of a multidisciplinary production site and meet with Officyna and the National Museum in Szczecin in Poland.

Berlin has gained a reputation as the place for the arts in Germany. When we started ufaFabrik 25 years ago, there were hardly any stage facilities for independent performers, Bethanien was the one pioneer model of a residential arts center. Today, a widespread diversity of venues and creative spaces across all art forms have emerged. During the conference, you will experience 8 partner organizations, who will host the Res Artis’ sessions in their venues, all of them different in their concepts and structures. The common ground shared by these spaces is the enthusiasm in supporting emerging artists and international artistic exchange.

We are grateful for the support of the Berlin Hauptstadtkulturfonds, which made this conference possible. Under the curatorial direction of Adrienne Goehler, the Berlin Capital City Culture Fund, located within the German Ministry for Culture and the Media, fosters the dynamic variety of independent arts projects in Berlin.

I take the opportunity to thank the team at ufaFabrik as well as Peter Legemann of Schloss Broellin and Marie Le Sourd of the Asia-Europe Foundation for the untiring assistance in bringing this conference to reality.

Wishing us all together an exciting meeting, sharing our cultures, experiences and ideas.

Hendrik Kloninger

First of all, welcome all of you, from 42 countries, to the “International Artists Residences – Sharing Cultures and Social Changes, 2005 Berlin”. I would like to express, as well, how honoured I am here, in my capacity as the Deputy Executive Director of the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), to open the Conference, together with ASEF’s partners: UfaFabrik, Res Artis and Brandenburger Tor Stiftung. I am very proud to have this opportunity of working together with you.
 
ASEF was established in February 1997 by members of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). We are based in Singapore. With the subsequent ASEM enlargement  taking place in November 2004, currently we have altogether thirty-eight countries and the European Commission as our Members. ASEF’s mission is to promote mutual understanding and respect between peoples in Asia and Europe through greater cultural, intellectual and people to people exchanges.
 
In its cultural exchange activities, ASEF perceives culture in both its narrow sense in artistic expression like visual, performing arts, music and its wider sense as the totality in social development, improvement or refinement. Its objective is to provide a unique environment where artists and cultural professionals from Europe and Asia can meet, share experiences and ideas, learn more about each other’s contexts of artistic works and potentially  develop opportunities for future collaboration. The emphasis is on process instead of the end result.
 
Accordingly,  ASEF has forged its focus on: young artists in exchange (with yearly forum and camp in the fields of photography, dance, music and new media arts); process oriented platforms for exchange (independent cinema/museums/autonomous cultural centres), dialogue on policy and culture and a vision for an Asia-Europe Cultural Portal.

At this point, you may already realise the irony that “artists in residence” per se is not part of ASEF’s cultural exchange programme, yet we are partner with UFAFabrik and RES ARTIS for the RES ARTIS 2005 Berlin! To address this question in short, if I may try, that is because WE SHARE THE SAME INTERESTS! Through our work, we hope that the mobility of artists can be sustained and increased, they can, therefore, exchange knowledge face-to-face, and thus each of them will be enriched by others’ experience.
 
Let me explain a bit more.
 
1. When one refers to artists in residence, one also thinks about artists’ mobility, exchange, learning about each other’s context, creative process, development of networks and future collaboration projects: these are also some of the key issues ASEF is concerned with in its young artists’ exchange programme.
 
2. When RES ARTIS and Ufafabrik approached ASEF, they were particularly enthusiastic in getting more contacts and participants from Asia artists communities; while, at the same time, ASEF was interested in linking Asian cultural professionals with the European and especially  those from  Eastern Europe. Synergy between our respective organizations can therefore help multiply exchange and networks between the 26 delegates under ASEF and the rest of the participants coming from Europe but also Africa and America. I am very pleased to unveil to you that I had spent so far, in total, nearly 12 years in the African continent before I moved to Singapore to join ASEF. You can imagine how delighted I am to see the independent artists from Africa.
 
The expansion of network, realised by the Res Artis 2005 Berlin, also enriches ASEF’s connections with autonomous cultural centres, which we started to develop since last year’s meeting in Shanghai (International Meeting between Autonomous Cultural Centres, organized by BizArt, Artfactories and ASEF).
 
3. Finally, one key point in the participation of ASEF as a partner for this event on Sharing Cultures and Social Change, is its long-standing efforts in bringing together not only artists and cultural professionals but also representatives from other foundations/regional and national cultural agencies to facilitate the dialogues. This is also an important part of ASEF’s programme on Dialogue on Policy and Culture, to act as an interface between the levels of the artists/cultural professionals and policy makers’ level.
 
For the three above reasons,  ASEF is today very pleased to be here.
 
Let me at this point thank very much for the efficient support of our partners  at UFA Fabrik, Rudolf Brünger, Sigrid Niemer, and Julie Upmeyer. I have to confess that I have known Mr. Brünger for 25 years. When I was a director for Teachers’ Training Courses at the Goethe Institut in Berlin, at that time, we tried to connect German language teachers all over the world with cultural actors in Berlin and, in particular from Ufafabrik. A special note for Alia Swastika from Cemeti art house, Indonesia who is doing a staff exchange programme at UFA under ASEF’s programme and is also working on this conference; at RES ARTIS the very dynamic Mrs. Maria Tuerlings.
 
I would like to take this opportunity also thank Mrs. Chulamanee Chartsuwan,  Director of our Cultural Exchange Department who has brought much spirit to this programme as well as to the whole development of CE at ASEF.  My thanks also go to Miss Marie le Sourd, we are always amazed by her energy and innovative ideas. In addition, I have brought with me the best wishes from Ambassador Wonil Cho, the Executive Director of ASEF, who salutes all the participants for your courage in artistic development in different corners of the world.
 
Let me finish by quoting Emma Lewis, art student from UK, who took part recently in the Third Asia-Europe Art Camp 2005 in Bandung, Indonesia: “Many of my assumptions have been challenged. I have been lead to reconsider my practice and how it can be further developed. Exposure to so many creative approaches to the arts has been inspiring and has greatly motivated me. I hope many collaborations will emerge from this camp”.
 
The German philosopher Heinrich Beck said: Freedom of creativity is necessary for dialogue. I take the liberty to say something further that FREEDOM OF MOBILITY IS NECESSARY FOR DIALOGUE.  I sincerely hope that through these very intensive three days, more knowledge on artists in residence programme, experiences and contacts will be gained so that more artists’ exchange and creative exposure can take place in the future to foster even closer links and understanding between Asia and Europe!
 
Thank you.