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Connecting the social and the cultural sector Back

Connecting the social and the cultural sector

17 Jul 2020

The confinement in Brussel due to COVID-19 was brutal; everything stopped working from one day to another. Sandra Issa, responsible for the project Recup’art, saw that the local artists in her network were profoundly affected. Artists and freelancers were economically affected by the crisis, they lost their jobs, and many projects cancelled.

Cultureghem, the organization where she works, responded quickly to the crisis and adapted its activities fast and was efficient in reacting to the current situation. One of their projects is to bring more art to the neighbourhood, so she discussed with Yannick Roels, director of Cultureghem, on future projects and they could combine the desire of helping the artists and the food aid project. This is how the project Recup’art started: adding art to their food aid parcels to help people in need and artists. Adding some culture to the food package connects two different sectors: the social and artistic sector.

Just as they provide food for people in need, they wanted to contribute to local artists affected by the crisis across Europe. They also felt that people needed more than just food to cope with the isolation imposed by corona measures. They believe in the power of art in the sense that it can also offer a healthy distraction and allow people to dream and heal. Their project Recup’art is also part of their ambition of bringing more art to the neighbourhood where we are working. It is a seed project part of a bigger goal of turning Abattoir, where the organization is based, into an experimental art platform in the heart of Brussels and Europe.

Different steps of the project

First, they will launch an open call at the beginning of July for artists to participate. A jury will make the selection process of team members, volunteers and people from their audience. Upon reception of artworks, they will organize a small exhibition on-site where the public will be able to view the artworks. Afterwards, they will start sharing the pieces of art with their food aid parcels to people in need.

The project is a European solidarity project since this fund is investing to support European artists and create a connection with a new public in Brussels and across different sectors. This project focuses on the idea of European solidarity: artists provide people in need with art, and Recup’art delivers artists with financial support during those difficult times.

Their goal is to connect the European creative world with some of the most marginalized populations: undocumented people, those living in poverty, homeless, refugees, the people who are today the most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and its economic consequences.

What they want to reinforce is the idea that: we are not alone.

How will the project contribute to the future of our European public space

“As European citizens living on the same continent, we have to come together and exchange our knowledge, ideas, cultures, structures and means to help each other by offering what we have: whether food, art, or simply appreciation.”, says Sandra.

Through this artistic project, they want to reinforce this sense of shared space that we have in Europe: The common cultural space that no borders can stop. Their project is also an effort to connect the cultural world with the social sector.

Recup’ART will carry its European dimension by inviting all European artists to send their art by mail or email. By communicating on online platforms about their project, they also hope to inspire similar actions in all Europe.

Grant awarded: €17,075

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