CAS Arts and International Cooperation 2021

For the third edition of the part-time further education course with a newly revised curriculum, a new co-director has been won in the person of the Syrian cultural manager Rana Yazaji. She will lead the course together with Dagmar Reichert. Within the topic Arts and International Cooperation: Collaborating in Fragile Contexts and in Processes of Peacebuilding, the course focuses especially on the cooperation between people from the Global North and the South, and also on the relationship between the needs of artists and the procedures of organisations that mandate such art projects.

The registration period is running. All information on the course can be found here.

Jour Fixe on the current situation in Nagorny Karabach
20 January 2021, 17.15 h, Swiss time

We will hear about the situation in Nagorny Karabach and discuss options for new art initiatives around this region. Philipp Egger, Delegate for Eastern Europe at the Gebert Rüf Foundation and program director of the Swiss South Caucasus Net who has been in Karabach just before the war began and again after the signing of the ceasefire agreement, will tell us about his experiences.

Depending on participants the discussion will take place in English or German.

Zoom Link
Code: 004928

artasfoundation invites you to its regular meeting Jour Fixe every 3rd Wednesday of the month in order to discuss ongoing projects as well as answer questions raised by the work or relevant political developments. Since Covid-19 started, we have been holding the Jour Fixe via Zoom, taking the opportunity to also invite people from further away.

If you wish to be informed about the agenda each month, please sign up on our Jour Fixe e-mail distribution list here.



From the current circular

Dear friends of artasfoundation

We are glad that you are here! We don’t have to tell you about these difficult times. Most of our projects are in a waiting position and – far worse – the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan is killing more and more people. There is a distinction between civilian victims (many!) and victims among the soldiers (many!), but if the soldiers are mostly very young men, such as we got to know in our projects there, it makes little difference to us. We hear from our partners and friends in the region that they simply want peace. They try to resist nationalist propaganda, but it probably takes a lot to not think in general terms ‘we versus the enemies’ in such a situation. ‘Our’ artists there draw, paint or make music with the children and young people of refugee families: artistic emergency aid on site. The borders are closed. Apart from sending money for material, there is not much we can do at the moment. At least not yet.

Bad news came also from Lebanon in recent weeks. But here, too, the artists we know are working with all their strength against desperation and misery. If everything works out, one of them will come to the sogar theater in Zurich in December to perform and also tell us more about the situation there. (More on this below.)

But we don’t just want to tell you about difficult things! Here are some news we are very happy about: We were able to sign a contract with the Zurich University of the Arts to set up a special Center for Arts and Peacebuilding. Further, our project partners in Tskaltubo and in Abkhazia* are very successful in continuing the projects we started together. Then, a new small publication that we edited will soon be released. Also our further education course Arts and International Cooperation, which will start again next year, is attracting much interest! And: We noticed how openness for contributions of the arts to peacebuilding is growing. You can read more about all that in this newsletter.

Now a big request: We are preparing to start projects in the Caucasus as soon as the borders are open again. The need is great. More than usual, we are currently dependent on financial resources and therefore ask you for donations. Please contact us if you want to dedicate them to projects in specific regions. And – if you are in the vicinity: come by once in a while for one of our monthly ‘Jour Fixe’ talks – live or online. You can always find the program on our website.

To better times!

Our warmest wishes,
your team from artasfoundation


*artasfoundation would like to underline that its use of names and titles particularly with regard to the conflict regions should not be construed as implying any form of recognition or non-recognition by the foundation or as having any other political connotation whatsoever.