thessaloniki 2017

‘Otherness Dialogues’ workshop held by othernessproject during the second transnational meeting in Thessaloniki, of You Are Welcome project, 25-26 November 2017.

Main focus was: object – personal story, storytelling and common narratives, and instant installation.

Questions:

How can we meet in a short time, in an easily accessible way with people speaking different languages, having different cultural background?

How can we give voice and empower participants through art to express their individual, personal feelings, while understanding their own cultural, historical, social, economic, linguistic background?

How can we create positive, reinforcing discourses together?

How can we raise empathy and foster social inclusion through metaphoric-artistic language?

Key notions:

Observing. Participants perceive and observe the space, themselves, their stories, objects, and each other. Space, time, exercises are conceived to allow perception, observation, reflection and self-reflection.

Boundaries. Storytelling uses the sideways technique, never enters spheres of privacy or trauma: it asks for personal stories related to the participants’ names, childhood, favourite objects, this way the participants can regulate themselves how far they go in their storytelling, they set up their own boundaries, are in control of their intimacy and of how much and in what way they are sharing and taking part in forming the temporary community of the workshop.

Metaphor. The workshop employs the simple and effective use of metaphor as a vehicle between semantics and imagination, it helps the participants express themselves in an artistic framework, protects their privacy and foster their creativity.

Empowerment. these tools and notions foster expression and (re)formulation of own identity, without re-traumatizing, labelling and self-labelling, categorizing of the participants. It aims for empowerment and seeking ways of self-expression and always fluid self-identification.

Trainer: Rita Sebestyén

Assistant: Mira Nadina Mertens

Methods and tools: ⓒ othernessproject.

Partners from the Czech Republic (Institut pro regionaini rozvoj, o.p.s.), Denmark (Othernessproject), the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (Center for Intercultural Dialogue -CID), Germany (Jugend- & Kulturprojekt e.V., Memorare Pacem and the Municipality of Dresden), Greece (Addart and the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki), Hungary (Gláser Jakab Emlékalapítvány) and the United Kingdom (Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council).

photo: Olga Yocheva

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