Depicting the city's culture in the future

As part of the Haarlem 2040 future vision of Haarlem's municipality, the section culture & econmy has invited me to design, organise and lead a session in which culturally interested inhabitants of Haarlem are invited to depicture their vision on cultural policy in Haarlem in 2040. 

Thirty artists and others working within the cultural field, came together in the metropole's largest cultural incubator (Belcanto, Meurkens&Meurkens), to envision culture in their future city.

As the current situation forms our point of departure, we started with a short introduction about the current cultural basis of Haarlem (museums, monuments, festivals, stages & platforms, and culture fostering spaces). Predicted future trends were briefly highlighted as well. During this presentation the participants wrote down their reactions (and anti-reactions!), leading to important critical input. A quicword relay race, quickly opened up the creativity and imagination.

The main ingredient of the session was the creation-part: groups of 4 diverse participants worked on large panels, to envision their cultural Haarlem of 2040, leading to interesting discussions. The panels depicted their fears, dreams, irritations and wishes for the culture in their future city.

The strongest needs were: to bridge the gap between the old 'conservative' culture and the experimental culture, to create 'new heroes' and cultural satellites throughout the whole city in order to reach a broader audience, and to create more space -literal space and space within the laws and regulations - to experiment, to create and to practice.