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Eastern European Network

Exchange programs of the Akademie Schloss Solitude for young artists in the extended European Union and already selected Solitude fellows

From its beginning, the Akademie Schloss Solitude has considered the promotion of young artists from Eastern Europe—by giving them the opportunity to develop their work and carry experiences back into their home countries—its entitled mission. After various previous projects, for example the GDR Travel Fellowship, which in 1990 gave artists from the former GDR access to the Akademie’s network, the cooperation of Akademie Schloss Solitude with the Center for Contemporary Art (CCA) Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw/Poland lead to the foundation of a new residency program with two live/work studios at Ujazdowski Castle in 2003.

This exchange program »a-i-r laboratory«, is coordinated by the Polish cultural manager Agnieszka Sienkiewicz-Nowacka, who was a fellow for art coordination at Akademie Schloss Solitude invited to prepare a Solitude exhibition and festival in Warsaw in autumn 2002. Every year, two artists from Warsaw are invited to Akademie Schloss Solitude for three months. In exchange, the corresponding number of artists (Solitude fellows) are invited to spend several month-long stays in Warsaw. At the end of each residency, the projects developed during that time are presented to the public.

By implementing this program, the Akademie has fulfilled a long lasting wish to enter into an equal, bilateral exchange with Eastern European institutions and artists.

Due to positive experiences with this first exchange program in Eastern Europe, the Akademie Schloss Solitude in cooperation with the Ministry of Science, Research and Arts of the State of Baden-Württemberg, the Collegium Budapest, the József Attila Circle, the Robert Bosch Foundation, the German-Polish Foundation, the Hungarian and Romanian Cultural Ministries initiated an extension of the program for Hungary and Romania in 2005 and 2006. The exchange program has been extended to Bulgaria, Serbia, and Croatia since 2007. Currently, the exchange program is running with partner institutions in Poland, Hungary, Croatia and Serbia. 

Based on the same principle as in Warsaw, young arts administrators from the individual countries will be invited and educated as fellows for art coordination at Akademie Schloss Soitude. Furthermore, one to two studios will be provided by existing cultural institutions for the exchange programs in the cooperating cities.

The total budget for each exchange program is covered in half by Akademie Schloss Solitude and by in half by the involved partner institutions. The money is allocated solely to the promotion of artists and art projects, not for infrastructure of the involved institutions.

Opening Our Closed Shops

From 2008 to 2010 the program had been extended with the three – year project »Opening Our Closed Shops«, supported by the Allianz Cultural Foundation. Its main aim was to counteract the imbalance of artistic exchange between Eastern and Western European countries. Through an intensive interdisciplinary cooperation between the Akademie Schloss Solitude with its five partner institutions in Warsaw, Budapest, Bucharest, Sofia, and Novi Sad, an ongoing dialog has been developed, resulting in concrete public projects such as exhibitions, publications, workshops, concerts, and performances. Furthermore, an artistic residency exchange program between the partners of the Akademie Schloss Solitude was established.

Exchange program »New Networks« in cooperation with the Centre for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle in Warsaw, Poland
Exchange program with Hungarian writers in Budapest, Hungary
Exchange program with POGON – Zagreb Center for Independent Culture and Youth
Exchange program with the Centre for Contemporary Art, Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw, Poland