The Open Institute

The Open Institute
is a place of creative sensitivity and artivistic practices.

It is a space where experienced artists, debutants, activists and culture animators of various cultural origins work together on tools from different fields of art and social sensitivity. They listen to the voice of minorities, confront the screams of xenophobia, address the border issues and look for forms of being together where values such as  responsibility, respect and care work not only for the imagination.

The program of The Institute as well as shared artistic activities are aimed at eliminating the distinction between „us” and „them” in relations with migrant communities.

This year’s group of female artists is diverse in terms of culture and artistic experience. In the project the participants are from Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, Argentina, Turkey and Kenya. Over the last 7 months they have been developing social and artistic activities in Poland and Greece. This edition of The Open Institute was a real challenge for everyone. From the beginning, we wondered how, in the current situation, we should design the work with communities as the main tool after all is the direct contact, the time spent together, trust and exchange of experiences. The questions were: How to develop a set of alternative support tools? How should we translate co-creation and conversation into the language of virtual meetings? How today can art respond to the needs of newcomers, those in crisis or at risk, even more than before the pandemic, of social exclusion?

The works that have been created are a record of searching for contact, an attempt to respond to the need of closeness. They target at the acts of solidarity – listening, empowering in order to regain voice, helping people settle in and sharing stories. They are based on shared dreaming, doubting, playing, rewriting experiences into poetry that can transcend the familiar structures of languages and write new chapters of a shared history. The initiatives of the creators of The Open Institute bear witness to the times and tell stories and strategies of survival.

They are often a long-term process of support and exchange, a reflection to which we get an insight through fragments of stories and snapshots of experience.

Artists: Agnieszka Artemiuk-Słonecka, Magdalena Barszcz, Maria Beburia, Maximiliano Bober, Agata Cieślak, Natalia Dovha, Hanna Filanovich, Taras Gembik, Veranika Los, Gracie Matu, Alka Nauman, Daga Ochendowska, Aliaksandra Shapialevich, Maja Soś

Supervision: Alicja Borkowska, Agnieszka Róż, Igor Stokfiszewski

Content support: Agnieszka Bułacik, Justyna Dąbrowska, Pietro Floridia, Kris Łukomski, Margaret Amaka Ohia-Nowak, Sara Pour, Łukasz Wójcicki, Jaśmina Wójcik

Production and promotion: Magdalena Duszyńska-Sasin, Weronika Chinowska

Video production: Wojtek Kaniewski

Graphic designers: Karo Koto