ERIAC Cultural Institutions Network Initiative (CINI)
Transgenerational Knowledge Transfer
In Belgrade, on 06 February 2019, the Cultural Institutions Network Initiative (CINI) of the European Roma Institute for Arts and Culture (ERIAC), the first transnational European-level organization for the recognition and promotion of Roma arts and culture, hosted a one-day public symposium, entitled “Transgenerational Knowledge Transfer,” at the Museum of Contemporary Art Belgrade.
This exciting event provided a space for the examination and promotion of transgenerational knowledge transfer within Roma communities. It featured discussions on a variety of stimulating topics, including commemoration and knowledge production, as well as the opening of the innovative art exhibition, “Mi Daj Dzanol/Mother Knows.”
The symposium began with opening remarks by Slobodan Nakarada, the Director of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Dorothea Gieselmann, the Deputy Head of Mission of the German Embassy in Serbia, Aurora Ailincai, the Head of the Strategic Partnerships Unit of the Roma and Travellers Team of the Council of Europe, and Timea Junghaus, the Executive Director of ERIAC. After the opening, Mihaela Drăgan, the renowned Roma actress, playwright, founder of Roma Feminist Theatre GIUVLIPEN, and member of the ERIAC Barvalipe Academy, and Delaine Le Bas, the innovative contemporary artist and member of the Barvalipe Academy, gave a performance.
Following the performances, the first exciting panel presentation, entitled “What Could be ERIAC’s Contribution to Reconciliation and Inclusion in Western Balkans and Europe?” took place. The discussion featured Tobias Flessenkemper, the Head of the Belgrade Office of the Council of Europe, Orhan Usein, the Head of Roma Integration Office of the Regional Cooperation Council, and Zeljko Jovanović, the Chair of the ERIAC Board. Following lunch, there was an opening of the ground-breaking exhibition, “Mi Daj Dzanol/Mother Knows,” co-created by revolutionary Roma artists: Emília Rigová, Małgorzata Mirga-Tas, Zoran Tairović, Stevica Nikolić, Dušan Marinković, and Nancy Black. This innovative work examines and enacts solidarity and resistance, allowing for the emergence of a new sense of “Roma people.”
The final set of four discussions featured members of ERIAC’s Barvalipe Academy, the agenda-setting and strategic body of the Institute, the members of which bring together experiences across borders, identities, and generations. These discussions examined topics such as the reclamation of media space, knowledge production, fostering new generations of artists, and history and commemoration; these panels will feature a wide-ranging and exciting array of discussants, such as painter Zoran Tairović, scholar Delia Mandalina Grigore, Romani Rose, the chairman of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma, and Veljko Kajtazi, a member of the Croatian Parliament and founder of the “Kali Sara” Croatian Roma Federation. The symposium concluded with remarks by Zeljko Jovanvić and Timea Junghaus, followed by a reception and performance by Iva Barcić, an acclaimed Roma saxophonist.
(c) Dzenet Koko