Imagine 2020 Project
Related priority: A European green deal
Scientists have been warning us for decades about the looming, catastrophic effects of climate change. Politicians keep promising to do something about it. But perhaps it will be our artists, writers, dancers and musicians who finally change behaviours.
The direct, hard-hitting impact of the arts can bring us glimpses of the dystopian world that the climate crisis threatens. But the arts can also be subtle and persuasive, helping us to imagine a better world, a sustainable planet free of pollution and waste – the European Green Deal .
The transition to a circular economy means making the best use of products, components and materials, for as long as possible. And when they reach the end of their life, to use them again, perhaps in a different form.
The Erasmus+ supported CYCLE (Circular Economy Competences. Making the Case for Lifelong Learning) project recognises the central role that education and awareness play in this transition, by training trainers in the principles and practices of the circular economy. And these trainers will, in turn, go on to teach others.
What if nothing ever perished? What if we were reconnected with everything we’d thrown away, lost or deleted – from spam emails and old clothes, to friends and bad ideas?
For a year, artist Sarah Vanhee threw nothing away. Oblivion, her 150-minute stage performance, with funding as part of Creative Europe’s Imagine 2020 project, brings us uncomfortably face-to-face with our relationship to things in an unsustainable, throwaway age.
Imagine 2020 projects also mobilise ordinary people. With over 1000 bottles of water donated by the public, containing anything from a melted snowman to a puddle and a baby’s bathwater, the Museum of Water by artist Amy Sharrocks is a poetic reflection on our most precious resource.
Imagine 2020 shows how the arts provide a space where alternative futures are explored. Not as a distant future, far away, on a stage. But as a direct experience, empowering and inviting specific places and communities to connect and act.
Arie Lengkeek, Imagine 2020 project coordinator.