TEH Newsletter 2014 No. 6 – TEH Meeting 78 Register now!

Dear artists, activists, squatters and dreamers, 

We open this latest issue of the TEH Newsletter with some important news to communicate you. Unfortunately Trans Europe Halles together with other European cultural networks such as On The Move,Fresh Arts Coalition Europe,Res ArtisEuropa Cantat, etc. were not awarded by the European Commission's Creative Europe support to cultural networks. On what concerns TEH, this has a severe impact on our financial structure and we are obliged to postpone the recruitment process that we started some weeks ago.


In this newletter you can find all the information about TEH Meeting 78 in Pilsen (CZ) and also read a very critical article about the situation of arts in Greece writen by Elli Papakonstantinou, the director of TEH member centreVyrsodepseio (Athens, GR).

Best regards,

Birgitta Persson and José Luis Rodríguez.

Trans Europe Halles Coordination Office.

Lund, Sweden. 

TEH Meting 78 at JOHAN centrum, Pilsen (CZ) | 9–12 October 2014

Resgister now for TEH Meeting 78!


TEH Member JOHAN centrum is hosting the TEH Meeting 78 "Cooepration, not competition" that will take place in the city of Pilsen in Czech Republic between 9 and 12 October 2014.


The motto of this TEH Meeting is “Cooperation, not competition!” because until not so long ago JOHAN Centrum was one of the few independent cultural initiatives in Pilsen. Thanks to the designation of the city as the European Capital of Culture 2015, more and more civil society organisations operating in the cultural field are emerging and cooperation among them and with public institutions – like the Municipality and the European Capital of Culture 2015 project – is now crucial for the sustainable cultural development of the city.


The training programme of this meeting will offer a variety of workshops related to the topics of cooperation and sustainable development of cultural centres: cooperation technologies, creative business models, artist-in-residence programmes, collective architecture, art mapping, collaborations between cultural organisations operating in the same city, etc. The meeting will also provide possibilities to nurture, enhance and develop the cooperation among our centres and with other organisations.


The registration is open! Go to the registration form or read all the details below. 

All the information about the Meeting

The host centre: JOHAN centrum, Pilsen (CZ)

JOHAN Centrum was founded in 1998 and is a cultural centre supporting not only alternative culture, but also education. Our work has inspired similar initiatives in Pilsen and during your stay here you will have the chance to get to know them as well as the venues which have been created by the independent cultural community of Pilsen.

In July 2014 the long-awaited renovation of our building – an old train station in the South of the city – is starting and with it a new stage in the history of our centre. Due to this, most of the activities of the meeting will take place in our Drama Centre, a building that we share with other social, cultural and educational organisations in Pilsen. 

Pilsen and the program of the TEH Meeting 78

Pilsen is the fourth largest city in the Czech Republic. It is a city with a great industrial tradition represented by companies such as Skoda and the Pilsner Urquell brewery. It is also the location of a growing and developing university. According to a great number of experts, Pilsen is the most typically Czech city with all the pros and cons of such a term. 

Read below the details about the excursions on Sunday 12: 

Plasy Monastery – 5h visit 

Founded in the 12th century by Prince Vladislav II, Plasy was burned down by the Hussites in 1421 during the Hussite Wars. In the 18th century renowned architects J.B. Mathey, Jan Blažej Santini Aichel and Kilian Ignác Dientzenhofer transformed it into Baroque style. The former Cistercian monastery of Plasy boasts numerous Baroque ceiling and wall frescoes – even two paintings by Czech master Karel Škréta – as well as a stunning exhibition of pharmacies from three historical periods.

After the tour, we will cook and have lunch together around a bonfire in the surrounding area of the monastery.

Duration: 10.30 – 16.00 (5,5 hours) 

Pilsner Urquell Brewery – 2h visit 

Four years before Pilsner Urquell was invented, 36 barrels of bad beer were discarded in front of Pilsen’s town hall. The following year the decision to build a new brewery was announced and the first light “lager beer” was “born” in Pilsen during 1842. The Pilsner Urquell beer was so different from other brands on the market that it was considered a new kind of beer, simply called “Pilsner” or “Pils.” Nowadays, Pilsner beers make up 70 percent of all the beers around the world.


After tour, we recommend you to have lunch at Na Spilce Restaurant, which offers traditional Czech cuisine and beer.

Duration: 11.00 – 13.00 (2 hours) 


The deadline for TEH Members and Friends to register is 31 August. Registration for non-members is already open. The fee is 130€ per participant and it includes a 5 hours training workshop, access to all evening activities and meals from Thursday 9 to Saturday 11. You can register here.

Please note that places are limited, so register as soon as possible. And if your organisation plans to sendmore than two representatives, please contact us (katarina.duricova@johancentrum.cz) for confirming availability. Please contact us if you have any questions regarding the Meeting:

JOHAN centrum

Petra Štěpánová, communication – petra.stepanova@johancentrum.cz

Katarina Ďuricová, registration – katarina.duricova@johancentrum.cz

Trans Europe Halles

José Luis Rodríguez – jose@teh.net 



WUK invites Vyrsodepseio to explain the situation of arts in Greece

Since May 2014 TEH member centre WUK (Vienna, AT) has added an editorial section in their monthly program folder to report on international topics from the TEH network and others, which are interesting or important to read for people in Austria.

In the September issue, the director of TEH member Vyrsodepseio Elli Papakonstantinou contributed an interesting and alarming article about “Greek Art in a state of Emergency”, which WUK wants to make available for all TEH Newsletter readers. You can also read the article in German here or download WUK's program folder here.

The intention of the new WUK folder is to inform about the monthly program, but also to strenghten the public perception about WUK as a place of sociopolitical discussions. Based on the mission statement WUK wants to take a stand and make clear the sociopolitical claim of the centre.


if you would like to contribute an article for the WUK folder, feel free to contact Hanna Sohm (hanna.sohm@wuk.at). 



"Greek Art in State of Emergency" by Elli Papakonstantinou



I come from Greece, a country where nothing is coherent and consistent any more. So, in order to survive a crisis situation what people around me need the most is to articulate a new narrative for themselves, one that will make sense. It all starts when everything collapses, really.


Our national identity (are we still Europeans? Are we less Europeans?), our social cohesion (this crisis is in fact a violent redistribution of wealth and a social class war above everything else), loss of self-esteem (unemployment rising, reaching a phenomenal 90% in theatre sector!) every day life shuttered (demonstrations, universities shut down, the city of Athens has turned into a relic/ a reminiscent of what used to be my town of birth), infrastructures destroyed (education, health system, etc). In the end, our very political system, democracy fails us, if we think for instance the upraise of the Golden Dawn party and the violation of our Constitution (The Greek Parliamentarians have recently voted for what they called “Multiple Legislations”, variant laws of about 600 pages ranging from pensions to pharmaceutical industry legislations ALL IN ONE vote and without giving MPs sufficient time to read it and only 3 hours discussion in the Parliament).


In the Arts industry, subsidies stopped entirely (since 2011), heavy taxation was imposed on non-profit companies (even if a company has no activities at all they now have to pay 1,000 Euro per year!), Greek National TV and Radio Channel were forced to shut down for the first time (it wasn't even shut during the 70’s dictatorship), Institutionalised art took over, lobbing and monopolies and a kind of undercover neo-liberal censorship was established in Greece, a country proud to have invented theatre, freedom of speech and democracy.


This censorship and oppression is not openly exercised for everyone to see, but it’s still there with alternative means to terrorise and undermine independent Art sector. Last May (2013) Giorgos Kaminis, the Mayor of Athens (who has been re-elected last month) threatened to shut down all independent spaces in Athens based on an existing “security and safety legislation” that dates back in the 40’s. He actually realised this threat last May by sending out official notifications by the Municipality of Athens (in charge of all technical departments related to theatre licenses) to almost all independent spaces in Athens! These notifications had specific dates for the closure of the spaces and due to high fines and pressure some independent venues were forced to shut down. 


Thanks to the reactions of the independent sector Mr. Kaminis halted the process of official sealing. He also, brought in parliament in a “state of urgency” a new law (even vaguer than the old one) without prior dialogue with interested parts. This law was voted in parliament and the press celebrated as a victory the fact that companies can now perform anywhere they want (on terraces, in old buildings, outdoors, etc.) with a temporary permission that is granted by the municipality itself (!)…paying no attention to the fact that no amendments were introduced for the licensing regulations for the existing theatres. 


Yesterday, the recently re-elected notorious mayor (Mr. Kaminis) has moved on with the plan of shutting down all independent theatres and braking down independent art production in Athens. Just yesterday, he stuck on the front doors of 150 (!) – imagine 150!! theatres in Athens, that means almost ALL independent spaces- a notification of closure. The mayor is enforcing independent theatres to remain closed and cancel all winter programming. August is a month when people in independent and public sector are on a holiday. One can’t even get a lawyer or, even worse, contact the municipality to understand what has to be done! And of course, most spaces are closed for summer holidays. It is important for the foreign community to support us, as this kind of politics will result in total institutionalision of the Arts and suppress free-thinking guaranteed by the independent sector. This is serious provocation for the Arts terrorizing artists to think twice before they speak freely.


Elli Papakonstantinou is the director of TEH member centre Vyrsodepseio(Athens, GR). Vyrsodepseio is a grass root project that sprung as a reaction to the question: “how to produce art in “difficult times”? It became an evolving project for horizontal politics, networking, of synergies and co-operations. Today, it constitutes a platform/network of about 400 artists/activists/volunteers. Vyrsodepseio is a 2 level building of 2.000sqm, a vibrant cultural cell that helps drastically to the growth of innovative, hybrid art with a rich weekly program. 




Workshop in Lviv (West Ukraine) | 24–27 September 2014 

From 24–27 September 2014 Cultural Industries Association organizes the workshop "Regeneration of Industrial Buildings" in Lviv (Ukraine). The aim of the workshop is to investigate and develop models for regeneration of industrial buildings based on the needs of the creative sector in Ukraine. 

Read more…

"Creativity and Well-being for All" | 24–28 September 2014

The International Council for Cultural Centers (I3C) in association with the European Network for Cultural Centers (ENCC) organizes the First World Summit of Community Arts Centers and Networks. This international event will take palce 24–28 September 2014 in city of Veliko Turnovo (Bulgaria). 

Read more…


Call for partners | The Hidden City

The Hidden City is a project currently being realized within the Pilsen – European Capital of Culture 2015. Its two main goals are to create an unconventional guide to Pilsen and to map Pilsen’s social and cultural specific features. The project combines civic participation, cultural mapping, interpretation of cultural heritage, community art and a usage of new technologies. If you are interested in joining the project, contact Jakub Deml (tonamto@kvasi.cz). 

Call for partners | TACADANSER 

Tacadanser Festival (Italy) is searching for partners interested in musicology research (universities, cultural associations, etc.), similar Festivals and musicians interested on waltz. Their project is all about the traditional dance music Waltz: research, production and development of cultural activities, training and touring. Contact: Andrea Bonacini,andrea.bonacini@tacadancer.com

Final Call – Aesthetica Art Price 


Aesthetica Art Prize, an international award that celebrates and supports rising talent from around the world. Submissions are welcome from artists at all stages of their career, and categories for entry are: Photographic & Digital Art, Three Dimensional Design & Sculpture, Painting & Drawing and Video, Installation & Performance. Entries close 31 August 2014. 

More information