Folder Exploring Future Europe

From January 2016, the Netherlands will take on the Presidency
of the European Union (EU) for six months. All the official
gatherings and meetings will take place in Amsterdam.
For this six-month period, the intendant Marjo van Schaik,
Frans de Vries and Egbert Fransen will present an arts
and design program called Exploring Future Europe –
Celebrating Dutch Culture in Amsterdam. The cultural program
will involve performing arts, visual arts, fashion, design,
film, media, photography and storytelling by young creatives
from across Europe and the Netherlands. It is designed to
be as inclusive as possible. Anybody can join in. All voices
will be heard. The program will invite people to let their
imaginations flow freely – confusion, disruption and wonder
will go hand in hand with innovation and connection.
We believe that dialogue is stronger than debate; diversity
stimulates the creative processes; and straying from welltrodden paths offers unexpected new insights. Through this
new program, we hope to add value to the future of Europe
while the spotlight is turned on the Netherlands.
Transition as a mobilising force
We are living through a time of great transition. In almost
every aspect of our daily lives we are confronted with major
changes – whether these changes are technological, economic,
ecological, societal, political or religious. These changes
are all having an enormous impact on European and Dutch
society. A new order is developing, with new values. Cities are
becoming more relevant, with a focus on the local aspect of
living together with more people in a smaller space. At the
same time, the global aspect – connectivity via viral hubs –
is pivotal. Shared values are changing away from a focus on
efficiency and economic growth towards connectivity,
sustainability and inspiration.
Impact of arts and design
We believe in the impact of arts and design. We believe that
performing arts, visual arts, fashion, design, film, media, photography, poetry and storytelling all have the power to enrich our
society, to make it a more inspiring and better place to live,
with a stronger economy. In these times of transition, we believe
arts and design have the power to question these changes and
to look for explanations. And we believe that this power can
become even stronger by connecting with other countries.
Launching a creative challenge
A key element of our program is the EU2016 Creative Challenge
Call – a call to the new generation of young people who are
going to be so crucial to the development of Europe’s future:
young creatives, performers, writers, visual artists and designers
will be asked to think about the important issues of our time.
Via social media, via our networks and those of our partners, we
will collect ideas for projects, artworks and installations.
Key criteria will include the words: open, together, creative,
innovative, inspiring, interdisciplinary and surprising.
The EU2016 Creative Challenge Call will lead to new and inspiring
performances, programs and exhibitions. The result of the call will
be presented throughout the Exploring Future Europe program.
The cultural program of Exploring Future Europe will be
divided into three phases from January to June 2016.
During each two-month phase, the accent will shift in terms of
programming, target groups and location. Some elements will
begin during one phase and go on until the end of June (such
as the Wall of Interdependence and the Creative Campus).
The program will include a wide range of activities. Some of
these will be organised by our own team and some will be
carried out in cooperation with our partners. During all the
program activities, the projects from the EU2016 Creative
Challenge call will be showcased as far as possible.
Wall of Interdependence
Creative Campus
The Creative Campus will be a temporary sweatshop at the ‘Kop
van Java’ – a place where young artists, creatives, designers
and students will work together and showcase their work.
It will focus on creative industries: (social) design, gaming,
technology, photography and architecture. For two months,
prototypes will be developed for innovations around our theme
Exploring Future Europe. Pavilions will be built by universities
and companies focused on innovation. For the audience,
the pavilions will offer an ongoing showcase of creation and
innovation in the Netherlands and Europe. There will be some
pop-up food courts and a small stage. To make a symbolic
connection between the Creative Campus and the Marineterrein, two temporary towers will be constructed: one at the
Marineterrein and one at the Kop van Java. We are hoping this
will be in collaboration with the Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst.
The Wall of Interdependence aims to connect the world of
politics that’s hidden away behind the walls of meeting rooms
to our daily lives. We will use the wall that is the fence between
the street and the meeting area where the politicians meet
as a poster wall. On the inside of the wall, we will post texts,
comments and cartoons to inspire the politicians and to remind
them about the feelings and events going on in the world
outside. And on the outside of the wall, we will post texts and
comments about the formal meeting going on in the meeting
rooms. During the six months of the Dutch presidency, a kind of
‘Gesamstkunstwerk’ (or complete work of art) will develop. At
the end of the presidency, we hope the wall will be completely
covered with comments and cartoons. We will ask the Dutch
embassies in the other EU countries to do the same in their cities.
Future Europe Festival
We will finish off the cultural program with the Future Europe
Festival. The projects initiated by the EU2016 Creative
Challenge Call will be presented in many different locations
across Amsterdam. This festival is designed for everybody.
The public will be invited to participate as well as simply
being spectators. Designers, gamers, architects and other
creatives from the pavilion at the Creative Campus will open
their doors and show the results of their activities; journalists
and bloggers will showcase their comments, while poets,
musicians, dancers and performers will all share their
contributions. Members of the public will be invited to
join in, comment, blog and take part in many different ways.
All artists and creatives are invited to take part in the
cultural program. We will start with the Wall of
Interdependence, which will showcase the work of writers,
philosophers, visual artists and poets. During the
Creative Campus, we will see more designers, gamers, fashion
designers and innovation students, and the Future Europe
Festival will involve all types of performing artists.
Students, creatives, professionals from across Europe,
the Netherlands and Amsterdam are welcome to join in.
The EU2016 Creative Challenge Call explicitly focuses on
young creatives. In the Creative Campus, students will work
together with professionals. At the same time, seminars,
labs and workshops will be organised for the creative
industry (including officials, politicians, designers etc).
The Future Europe Festival is aimed at a wider audience:
not only people living in Amsterdam but also from the
rest of the Netherlands and from across Europe, including
visiting officials, journalists and politicians.
The organisation, coordination and curating of the program
is being carried out in a collaboration between van Schaik,
de Vries and Fransen. They have chosen an ‘open source’
method of programming, with a focus on participation,
co-creation and social innovation, without losing control of
artistic quality. The ambition is to cooperate with a large
number of partners. This group will grow and expand until
the end of June 2016, when the Dutch presidency of the
EU finishes.
Marjo van Schaik
Want to become a partner? Contact us:
[email protected] | +31(0)20 7884444