Apply to become one of ten mediators of contemporary art as part of the international project "Agents of Change: Art Mediation as Conversation"
If you have an experience with a person affected by dementia or have great motivation and you’re interested in the art world, apply to become one of ten mediators of contemporary art as part of the international project, "Agents of Change: Art Mediation as Conversation! "
The Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and the DOTS Foundation for an Open Society are taking part in the international project, which aims to educate ten art mediators who have experience with people with dementia. Applications accepted until February 17, 2021, 11.59 p.m. The training will take place online.
Contemporary art encourages thinking through shedding light on difficult topics and introducing one to the lives and experiences of the people we don’t connect within our daily lives. In order to promote understanding about contemporary art and encourage conversation, we need help from art mediators. Currently, we are looking for people whose relatives have been affected by dementia and who’d be prepared to embark on this project and become mediators of art. A total of ten select mediators will undergo free training and, together with new media artist Anna Priedola, create a work of art about the mental health of Latvian seniors. Furthermore, graduates of the program will be able to do paid work at exhibitions by the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art.
About the project
The Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and the DOTS Foundation for an Open Society are taking part in an international project, Agents of Change: Art Mediation as Conversation, which aims to promote understanding about contemporary art as a creative process that engages society and is based on conversation, attuning to the needs of local society and raising topics of significance to it. It takes place across four countries with cooperation between five organizations: the Finnish Cultural Foundation (Helsinki, Finland), the Tallinn City Museum (Tallinn, Estonia), Tensta konsthall (Stockholm, Sweden), and the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and the DOTS Foundation for an Open Society (Rīga, Latvia). The project is co-funded by the EU’s Creative Europe program.
The artwork and the artist
An artwork will be created in each participant country, with an artist cooperating with the art mediators. In Latvia, the art mediators will work in close cooperation with the new media artist Anna Priedola, creating an artwork entitled DAIRY DIARIES (Latvian: PIENA DIENASGRĀMATAS) in the form of audiovisual diaries and data visualizations depicting and relating the daily life of people affected by dementia, as well as their processes of perception and interpretation of sociopolitical realities and human relations. We will pay attention to another important matter – is it easy being a senior in Latvia, particularly if one has cognitive problems, however slight.
What is an art mediator?
Essentially, an art mediator is a guide to a particular exhibition. By delving into a specific art project or exhibition and tapping into their own experience, art mediators invite interested audiences to converse about the artwork and its topic. These people assist the audience, shedding light on hidden dimensions, or “translating” works of art, thereby enriching the experience of attending an art project or an exhibition and enabling one to reap greater benefits from it.
Who is eligible to apply?
> People of all ages are invited to apply (we especially invite people over the age of 65 to do so), in particular those who have encountered the diagnosis of dementia within their family or within their social circle. We invite people from all walks of life, with intercultural experience and education that shouldn’t be related exclusively to art.
> It is important that applicants are interested in art and matters of culture.
> Previous involvement in social activities and / or volunteering will be considered a plus.
> Excellent communication and language skills (Latvian, English, and Russian) will be considered a plus.
> The ten selected mediators have to commit themselves to participate in the project from March 2021 to February 2022 and to attend the summer camp of art mediation for five days in August 2021. They have to be able to attend at least 80% of the educational events.
Art mediation training
The art mediators’ training program (March 1 to December 31, 2021) will offer the opportunity to spend ten months doing the following:
> acquiring an in-depth understanding of art mediation and socially involving art;
> mastering the skills of participating in an engaging and egalitarian dialogue and inclusive communication;
> participating in creating an artwork together with an artist and mediating the work of art for diverse audiences;
> being a part of an international project, of a wider network of similar-minded mediators and agents of change from the partner countries.
The training program consists of four modules: art mediation, art and social change, diversity and inclusiveness, as well as conflict zones. Lectures, practical activities and homework involving local and international industry experts are planned within the framework of the program. All classes take place online. Latvian and English are the working languages, a translation will be provided if necessary.
Participation is free of charge. Participants will be provided with study materials and online learning tools. The project will cover all the transportation and living costs associated with participating in the art mediation camp, as well as provide modest remuneration for art mediation activities as the final artwork will be put on show.
1. Studies take place online, in video form, on workday afternoons and evenings from March 1 to May 31, 2021, over the span of 13 weeks, about 7 hours a week.
2. If the epidemiological situation allows it, an art mediation camp will be organized in Kuldīga, western Latvia, over the first week of August this year. The international camp will involve 40 mediators from Sweden, Estonia, Finland and Latvia with the goal of exchanging experience.
3. Practical activities: creating an artwork together with an artist from September to December 2021.
4. Showcasing the artwork in other European countries: January to February 2022.
Applications have to be submitted digitally until February 17, 2021, 11.59 p.m. to the email email@example.com with the subject “Agents of change” or by mail to Māra Žeikare, Latvijas Laikmetīgās mākslas centrs, Alberta iela 13, Rīga, LV-1010, postmarked no later than 17.02.2021. Applications submitted after the deadline will not be considered.
Online interviews: 17.02–28.02.2021. Representatives of the Latvian Centre for Contemporary Art and the DOTS Foundation for an Open Society will review the applications within two weeks after submission. The results will be sent to all applicants to the provided email by 28.02.2021.
The application should contain:
- A CV (advisable but not obligatory) or a short description about yourself, with your age, place of residence, language skills and occupation;
- A motivation letter with reasons for applying and describing one’s experience with someone affected by dementia.