RESCUE is a smaller scale cooperation project co-funded by the EACEA Creative Europe programme. Partners from Italy, Germany, Slovenia and Austria invite artists and students from secondary schools to explore the history of abandoned industrial sites in the participant countries, with a view to re-defining them as sustainable cultural spaces. Local students participate in workshops to re-discover the selected space, its industrial history and its significance for the region and its inhabitants. Working together with artists, the students develop creative ways of portraying and using the space, with various artistic media ranging from stories and photography to sound, light and performance art.

In an ongoing transnational exchange between the curatorial partners, the project participants communicate with audiences across the RESCUE network. The complex relationship between history, industrial heritage, people and socio-cultural developments is reflected in a creative process that will result in a postulation of cultural strategies that might be useful towards a broader regeneration of disused industrial sites through creativity.

Working so closely with students and their surroundings, RESCUE enables ongoing grass-roots cultural exchange between participants and local citizens, who will be invited to participate in the performances, presentations and exhibitions that the children and artists develop.

Project results include site-specific works from and for the selected locations; tools and analysis for cultural engagement with abandoned spaces; innovative models to reclaim disused industrial sites for the arts; dissemination of applied cultural engagement with the history of labour and industrial heritage; audience development in the sense of inclusion, interaction and engagement with cultural heritage and contemporary artistic practice; transnational mobility of cultural actors, artists and artworks.

RESCUE workshop mentors:

Maja Hodošček (1984) is an author of video works, installations, initiates workshops, and curates exhibitions. Her practice is research-based and experimental, focusing on performance, behavior, and modes of learning. She finished her MA at the Dutch Art Institute in Arnhem, NL. Her work was shown widely on international group exhibitions such as Hidden Curriculum,, Bratislava; Silence is Deafness Here, Gallery Podroom, Belgrade; Beyond the Globe, Moderna galerija, Ljubljana; South by South East, Guangdong Times Museum, China; Pipe Dream, Kunsthalle Exnergasse, Vienna; Travelling Communiqué, Museum of Yugoslav History, Belgrade. She presented her work on solo exhibitions in Dom omladine, Belgrade, Museum of Contemporary Art – MSUM, Ljubljana, Miroslav Kraljević Gallery, Zagreb, ŠKUC Gallery Ljubljana, Gallery Gregor Podnar, Ljubljana, etc. In 2020 she received the national award Rihard Jakopič for artistic achievements, and in 2010 she won OHO Award. She was an artist in residence in Tabakalera – International Centre for Contemporary Culture in San Sebastian (2019) and ISCP New York (2010).

Tomo Podstenšek (1981) is an established Slovenien prosaist. He writes novels and short stories, as well as children’s literature and plays. His short stories have been published in literary magazines in Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, Austria, Macedonia, Serbia, Poland etc. Many of them were award-winning or broadcast on RTV Slovenija radio shows. His novel Sodba v imenu ljudstva (The verdict on Behalf of People) (2012) was longlisted for the best Slovenian novel of the year award, Kresnik. In 2017 his novel Papir, kamen, škarje (Rock, Paper, Scissors) was shortlisted for the same award. In 2018 his book Ribji krik (The Scream of the Fish) was shortlisted fort the best Slovenian collection of short stories award. Apart from writing, Podstenšek occasionally takes the role of a director of children and adult theatre groups, mentors creative writing workshops, organises different literary events etc. He lives and works in Maribor.

Toni Soprano Meneglejte is half of the former tandem son: DA, which was active in the Slovenian and international visual arts scene for more than 15 years. Since 2015 she has been working independently, is an intermedia artist and her diverse practice includes photography, sound performances, space design, scenography, drawing, video and digital projects using social media.

Simon Žlahtič, self-employed in culture, finished his art history studies at the Faculty of Arts in Ljubljana. He participates in professional conferences and symposia, such as the TEH 85 conference in Pula, organized by Trans Europe Halls (2017) and Participatory Governance in Culture: Exploring Practices, Theories and Policies. DO IT TOGETHER in Rijeka under the auspices of UNESCO and the Kultura nova Foundation (2017). For the GuestRoomMaribor, he contributed interesting field lectures for various artists called Interest Safari (Interesni safari) (2017–2020). He also held art history lectures at The Slovenian Third Age University (2017–2020) and the cycle in Gallery K18 (2018–2020). He has also prepared and led tours of youth exhibitions in collaboration with Bunker (2017). He lectured on sustainability in architecture as part of the Bee the future project (2019). He contributed to a special issue of OUTSIDER magazine on sustainable architecture (2020). He edited and wrote articles and contributions for (2019–2020). As part of the Lent Festival (2016–2018), he participated as the street theatre executive producer. As an executive producer, he also collaborated with the theatre group ZIZ (2017, 2020). He has recently collaborated with the GRM residency platform (GuestRoomMaribor, 2017–2021) as a producer and curator and jury member to select guest residents (2017–2018). He curated Matija Bobičić's exhibition Paths and Collisons at the Rigo Gallery in Novigrad, Croatia, for which he assembled and prepared a catalog (2017). He participated in the international stop-motion animation festival StopTrik (2017–2018). As part of the festival, he prepared the exhibition Cinema and Maribor/Kino in Maribor (2018). He worked as a cultural producer and curator at the Pekarna Magdalenske mreže (2017–2018). He participated in a curator-artist residency exchange, where he was a guest at the Gallery of Contemporary Art in Graz (2018). He contributes texts for the catalog of resident artists GuestRoomMaribor (2018, 2020 [in progress]). He participated in creating the animated film by Miloš Tomić under the auspices of Film Factory (2019–2020).

Barbara Polajnar is a performer, producer, and pedagogue of theatre workshops. She studied cultural studies at the Faculty of Social Sciences in Ljubljana, where she also received her bachelor's and master's degrees on the topic of the Theatre of the Oppressed. Since 2010 she has been performing workshops, trainings, and education in techniques of the Theatre of the Oppressed in Slovenia and abroad. She is the co-founder and legal representative of the Cultural and Artistic Association Transformator. She was part of the international festival of contemporary dance Nagib's production and organizational team in Maribor and the event producer in the Incubator Moment. She leads the theatre-activist group ZIZ In Maribor. She is the program manager of the Non-festival/Ne-festival of the Theatre of the Oppressed. She is a co-author and performer in the plays Behind Closed Doors/Za štirimi stenami, Gala is no Joke/Gala ni šala, Narcissus, Caught in a Crossfire/Med dvema ognjema, Embrace of a Granite Cube/Objem granitne kocke, FiloZOO, Weddings Without Borders/Poroke brez meja, Ema, Cabinets of Old Junk/Omare stare šare, My Fairy Rights/Moje prav(lj)ice, Status quo in the labor market/Status quo na trgu dela, String that Saved the World/Vrvica, ki je rešila svet … She has participated in symposia and conferences with contributions on the Theatre of the Oppressed (international conference Caravan: WE-FOR-GET, the symposium on Theatre Pedagogy, symposium Challenges of Intercultural Dialogue in Maribor…), also publishes articles (Social Science Debates/Družboslovne razprave, Folio, Non-Governmental/Nevladna, collection Celebrating the Possibilities of Transformation/zbornik Praznovanje možnosti transformacije …) and is the co-editor of Co-decide, Co-create, Co-form/Soodločaj, soustvarjaj, sooblikuj: Theatre of the Oppressed for the Development of Political Theatre/Gledališče zatiranih za razvoj političnega gledališča (2014), The Theatre of the Oppressed at Work/Gledališče zatiranih na delu (2018), Active Theatre/Aktivno gled(al)išče (2020).  She is also the co-editor of the first book translated into Slovene of the Theatre of the Oppressed titled InExActArt. She participated as a project coordinator and training mentor in all performances of the Transformator Academy of the Theatre of the Oppressed in Ljubljana and the School of the Theatre of the Oppressed in Maribor.

Sara Bezovšek is a visual artist active in graphic design, new media, and experimental film. In her work, she collects, stores, and collages the visual references she encounters while browsing online and watching movies and TV series. Through appropriation, she creates new narratives, interested in what people watch and share on social media, how visual material is broadcast on the internet, and how it changes and affects users. In the context of the post-internet paradigm, she thus creates a space where online content and internet references are a consistent and indispensable part of the world we live in.

Dorijan Šiško is a Slovenian graphic designer who also explores other areas of visual art, such as illustration, multimedia, contemporary art and VJ-ing. His primary engagement in design is concerned with speculative, critical and multimedia design. In his works, he explores topics such as digital culture, the Internet, futurism, science fiction, tribalism and popular culture. He was the art editor of the socially critical student magazine Tribuna. He is a co-founder of the cultural association Kombajn and the art director of the art and design collective freštreš, with which he regularly publishes the freštreš maga/zine and exhibits in Slovenia and abroad. He is currently active as a freelancer in his own studio practice and as a creative leader and designer at the Nimaš Izbire collective. He is the recipient of two awards of the Brumen Foundation: for the newspaper Tribuna and for the book Freštreš 10. His work has been exhibited in such institutions as Osmoza, KUD Kibla, Kino Šiška, Slovenian National Museum, Modern Gallery Ljubljana, MGLC, GT22, Jakopič Gallery, Out to See Festival in New York, etc.

Vesna Bukovec (1977) graduated and obtained her master’s degree in sculpture at the Academy of Fine Arts and Design in Ljubljana. She is a socially critical author who expresses herself in various media, putting drawing in the foreground in addition to video. She has presented herself at several solo and group exhibitions in the domestic and international space. He also works in the field of graphic design and video art curation. Since 2015 she has been an expert associate of the DIVA Station at SCCA-Ljubljana.

Janez Klenovšek (1987, Maribor) is a photographer you can meet at the Glas Podzemlja Association and most often at various events around the city, where he takes care of their public image behind the lens. He attended the secondary design and photography school in Ljubljana. For one year, he gained additional experience as an assistant to photographer Damjan Švarc and then continued his photography career as a freelancer. He has photographed for SNG Maribor, Maribor Theatre Festival, newspaper Večer, KIBLA, Museum of Architecture and Design in Ljubljana, Centre for Creativity Maribor, Fotopub in Novo Mesto, Galerie Lisa Kandlhofer in Vienna, Planter's Club in Vienna, Maribor Art Gallery, Association Hiša, Mayo Milenovic Workman, FAK (Festival of Alternative Culture), Udarnik cinema, First Secondary school Maribor, III. secondary school Maribor, GT22, Drugajanje Festival for the Bunker Institute, Sonček Association, DOKUDOC Festival, ZIZ, KMŠ, Salon of Applied Arts, Pekarna Magdalenske mreže, MKC Maribor, StopTrik Festival, Huda Kava, Štuk, Gustaf Pekarna Hall, Jazz 'ma mlade Festival, Mladinin Oder – Lent Festival, Media Nox Gallery and Narodni dom Maribor. So far, he has held 11 solo exhibitions (GT22, III. secondary school Maribor, Isabella, Huda Kava, EKTC Maribor, Vetrinjski dvor, Šentilj Gallery, Glas Podzemlja Studio, MC Pekarna, Čajek teahouse, Narodni dom Maribor) and 10 group exhibitions (GT22, Vetrinjski dvor, Hladilnica Pekarna Gallery, Hostel Pekarna, Media Nox Gallery, FDV Gallery, Jazz 'ma mlade).

Lo Milo is an urban explorer and muralist based in Ljubljana, Slovenia. His interest in street and urban art developed through constant observation of public spaces and open areas, especially of incospicious detail not noticed at the first glance. The most pronounced feature of his work is adapting to the surroundings while integrating his additions to the broader view. This requires spontaneous site specific intervening in an already existing, primarly architectural, environment. Visual values of Lo Milo's work spring from different fields, such as minimal art as well as abstract street art and post-graffiti. His works are mainly located in urban and abonded places. They have been mostly created on the artists’ personal responsibility. Lo Milo collaborated with various organizations and festivals, such as Urban Forms (Lodz, Poland) Katowice Street Art, iBug Urban Art Festival, Street Art Festival Mostar, Autonomous Culture Zone Metelkova Mesto (Ljubljana), Kino Šiška – Centre for urban culture (Ljubljana), Faculty of Social Work – University of Ljubljana, Layerjeva Hiša – House of Artists (Kranj). In 2017, Lo’s work was selected for Best of streetart in 2017 by, the oldest, highly recognized street-art blog.

- Comune di Santo Stefano di Magra (IT)
- Klanghaus Kultur (AT)
- ibug e.V. (DE)
- Associazione Culturale Gli Scarti (IT)

Project is co-funded by Creative Europe program of the European Union and Ministry for Public Administration of the Republic of Slovenia.

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