With the aim to promote the participation of Kosovo’s artists and cultural operators in the main European cultural events, the “Culture for all – phase III” organizes study visits to EU Member States and IPA countries.
The objectives of the activity include the following:
- To increase the visibility of Kosovo’s artists and cultural operators in the main European cultural events as markets/festivals;
- To reinforce the capacities of Kosovo’s cultural operators and artists to participate in international events;
- To provide the opportunities for business contacts;
- To reinforce the mobility of artists and cultural products at the regional and international level;
- To contribute to a creation of a sustainable program to promote Kosovo’s artists and cultural operators abroad.
On 14 January 2016 a “Culture for all - Phase III” event was held in Pristina, Kosovo, to present the outcomes of the visits that artists and cultural professionals from Kosovo made to a range of international markets, fairs and festivals as part of the project in 2015: Classical NEXT, Sarajevo Film Festival, Womex, Meximex and the Venice Biennale. In addition to the artists themselves, the event was attended by representatives of the EU office in Kosovo and the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports of Kosovo, as well as journalists from the country's main media.
1st study visit to Classical NEXT market took place from 20 to 23 May 2015, in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. Classical NEXT is the world’s most important classical music meeting. Since 2011, around 2,000 art music professionals representing 1,000 companies from more than 40 countries have engaged with Classical NEXT.
For musicians from Kosovo – Dardan Selimaj, Baki Jashari, Besa Llugigi and Visar Kuçi – had the possibility to promote their work as well as to raise the visibility of Kosovo’s classical music at the international level.
“I think it was very important to participate in this kind of event to promote Kosovo and its classical music scene. Especially it is important to promote the Kosovo Philharmonic Orchestra (the only one in the country) since it never had a possibility to promote in any European country with the initiative by the Government or the State support.”
- Dardan Selimaj, musician and Director of DAM Festival
“Participation of Kosovo’s artists in world music scene is crucial for our professional and cultural development of our young country - to promote our artistic capacities and other cultural values.”
- Baki Jashari, Director of Kosovo Philharmony
2nd study visit to Sarajevo Film Festival took place from 19 to 22 August 2015, in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Today the Sarajevo Film Festival is the leading film festival in the South-East European region, recognized by both film professionals and the wider audience.
Three filmmakers - Arber Jashari, Henor Halili and BlertaZeqiri -, as well as three students from the Faculty of Arts of the University of Kosovo - Trëndelina Halili, Lum Radoniqi and Edon Bërveniku -, had the opportunity the assist the festival. The visit was accompanied by Hazir Haziri, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Arts.
“It’s needed international connections, and possibilities of young artists to go abroad for farther educations in the fields that we don’t cover here [Kosovo].”
- Hazir Haziri, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Arts
3rd study visit to WOMEX music market was organised from 11 to 26 October 2015, in Budapest, Hungary. WOMEX is an international networking platform for the world music industry. The annual five-day event comprises a bustling Trade Fair, Showcase Festival, Conference, and Film programme, as well as festive Opening and Award ceremonies.
The study visit involved eight musicians from Kosovo - Rona Nishliu, Sezgin Curi Dren Abazi, Flaka Goranci, Astrit Stafai, Rinor Ukimeri, Dea Xhemali and Rreze Kryeziu.
“I find this extremely helpful and supportive especially coming from Kosovo, where the artists from this country are not enough recognized and known and also the music and culture form this country is not known for most of the people.”
- Flaka Goranci, opera singer
“I believe being present in such events is very important even with no immediate concrete results. We all know how “easy” it is for Kosovo artists to break the boundaries and be present in concerts, expos and to be able and show their work internationally.”
- Rona Nishliu, musician and singer
4th study visit to MEDIMEX music market took place from 29 to 31 October 2015, in Bari, Italy. The fifth edition of MEDIMEX was aimed at the Italian and international music industry as well as the general public.
Seven musicians from Kosovo participated in the market - Adelina Thaqi, Agron Peni, Dren Abazo, Sezgin Curi (OffChestra), Blerta Kosova, Shapt Deda and Alban Nimani.
“With regards to promotional activities, I think Kosovar artists need showcase opportunities to perfume their art in front of festival directors, label managers and other key people. Opportunities for the in Kosovo are virtually non-existent, but securing showcase slots for Kosovar artists in fairs such as MEDIMEX or WOMEX is an option that could produce real results in my opinion.”
- Shpat Deda, musician
5th study visit to Venice Biennale was organised from 18 to 22 November 2015 in Venice, Italy. The Biennale is the most important contemporary art event in the world. In 2015, Kosovo had its own pavilion with the installation “Speculating on the Blue”, created by the artist Flaka Haliti.
The “Culture for all – phase III” supported the participation of nine participants to Venice Biennale; nine students - Blinera Ibishi, Diellza Sallova, Roland Kabashi, Sheklzen Bejta , Vita Beqiri, Dhurata Avdiu, Engjell Berisha and Yll Xhaferi; and one professor from the Faculty of Arts of the University of Pristina - Guri Cavderbasha.
6th study visit to WHO’S NEXT took place from 21 to 25 January 2016, in Paris, France. Today WHO’S NEXT is the leading international fashion trade show for womenswear in Europe.
In partnership with the French Embassy in Kosovo, the “Culture for all – phase III” supported the participation of two well-known fashion designers from Kosovo - Krenare Rugova and Venera Mustafa-, who were able to discover the current trends in the field of fashion and present their work at the international level.
“Participations in such activities are crucial for artists or product producers. It allows you to search the market and understand the international standard’s needs. Networking with professionals during these activities are very important for future collaborations. Taking in considerations that Kosovo is quite limited in exposure, such promotional activities are quite essential.”
- Krenare Rugova, fashion designed
“Fashion industry is rarely viewed as an integrated sector of the economy, the potential of creativity as an economic force has been slow to find recognition in Kosovo. As a consequence, while rich in talent, Kosovo lacks the infrastructure and capacity to commercialize its creative talent and reap its vast rewards. Despite the challenges facing the industry, fashion could arguably be the next big thing in Kosovo.
A lack of formal fashion training facilities creates weaknesses in all aspects of the industry no nationwide official body exists to encourage funding for designers, while poor infrastructure slows down production. Fashion provides an important opportunity to diversify the Kosovo economy, and promote employment, particularly among youth.”
- Venera Mustafa, fashion designer
7th study visit to Berlinale International Film Festival took place from 9 to 18 February 2016, in Berlin, Germany.
“Culture for all - phase III” helped eight directors and film producers from Kosovo to take part in this prestigious event, three of whom had been selected in the project call for documentaries and/or short films in 2015: Edon Rizvanollli, Astrit Alihajdaraj and Mathieu Bulent from MB Office. The visit was organised in partnership with the Kosovo Cinematography Centre (KCC).
8th study visit to PREMIER VISION was organised from 22 to 26 March 2016, in Istanbul, Turkey.
Through the visit, the participation of two craftswomen, Bardhe Imeraj and Luljeta Salihu, from Kosovo working with the local fashion designer Venera Mustafa and Krenare Rugova was supported.
9th study visit to ANNECY Film Festival took palce from 13 to 18 June 2016, in Annecy, France.
The "Culture for all - phase III" supported the participation of seven professionals from Kosovo working in the field of cinema, animation and culture: Mr. Vullnet Sanaja, Director of Anibar Festival of Peja, Ms. Rozafa Imami, Producer of Anibar Festival of Peja, Ms. Flaka Kokollo, animator and illustrator, Mr. Petrit Gora, animator and illustrator, Mr. Arvan Berisha, animator and illustrator, as well as Ms. Jeta Nushi, Director of the Department of Youth of the Municiplaity of Peja and Mr. Valon Ibraj, Head of Cultural International Diplomacy of the MCYS.
11th study visit to Internationale Tanzmesse nrw was held from 31 August to 4 September 2016, in Dusseldorf, Germany.
In the context of the visit, the participation of the dancers and Mr. Ahmet Brahimaj, the Director of the National Ballet of Kosovo, was supported.