Connecting Capitals will use art-making, education, and technology to connect and empower up to 20 Deaf youth ages 18-27 from the US and Belgium to be thoughtful and engaged citizens through a deeper understanding of their respective Deaf heritages. Through two exhibitions, public events, artistic co-creation, and a dedicated app, the project will strengthen awareness and understanding of Deaf and Hearing Belgian and American culture and values, build sustainable networks for collaboration, and promote cross-cultural understanding. At its core, the project is about youth civic engagement, collaboration, social inclusion, and celebrating difference through Deaf Heritage as both distinct from and interconnected with broader American and Belgian heritage.
creative connections through exchanges
This project will occur from January to June 2018, starting with a virtual exchange of Deaf participants from Belgium and USA, where we will have artists, advocates, and community leaders discuss different topics that impact our experiences as both global and digital citizens. Through the exploration of our cultural heritages, we will co-create art and visual narratives that represent individual experiences collectively.
centre of fine arts, brussels (Bozar)
BOZAR is a premier arts institute in Brussels with diverse programs and projects, actively advocating for creative and art-making that responds to the community.
Creativity, quality, and artistic diversity have been at the heart of the Centre’s mission since its foundation. But for art not to be something abstract and distant, for it to be truly part of the “culture” of a society – and particularly in a city as variegated and international as Brussels – the public must be able to experience it in a way that is both natural and lively. Art and people must find and recognise each other, must interact with and enrich each other. For the greater happiness of all. - Paul Dujardin, Director-general
Everyday individuals in our communities – storytellers, artists, musicians, and others – are at the center of vibrant societies, and are in a unique position to preserve cultural heritage.
In partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s Cultural Programs Division in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, World Learning is administering the Communities Connecting HeritageSM Program. The program engages at-risk communities, empowers youth, and builds partnerships between communities in the U.S. and in key strategic world regions through exchange projects that explore cultural heritage topics. These projects advance tangible and intangible cultural heritage appreciation and preservation through community outreach and public education and by reinforcing positive narratives.