HELLERAU – European Centre for the Arts, Dresden has been committed to working for and with refugees from the very start. In a city such as Dresden, where internationalism and tolerance are a daily struggle, as a cultural institution which works both internationally and locally we see it as our task to play a part in fostering understanding between people and providing them with places to meet. In May 2015 we opened the Golgi Park Intercultural Garden, Hellerau, on the abandoned area behind the Festival Theatre for this purpose. We reinforce this work with regular additional events such as Kitchen Talk, during which international guests tell their stories in a cosy, personal atmosphere and cook together with the audience.
Building on these experiences and networks, since mid-2016 the Refugee Art Center has been developing at HELLERAU – European Centre for the Arts, Dresden. We use joint artistic activities to create a platform where refugees, artists and activists can express themselves through art. Different projects in the fields of dance, theatre, the fine arts, music and politics make refugees' artistic stances an integral part of our cultural work, encouraging them to participate in cultural life. The focus is on learning from one another and engaging in transcultural discourse. In the long term, the Refugee Art Center will become established as an independent space for projects where people can meet and create art. There are plans for artistic projects in and around the Hellerau Festival Theatre in cooperation with artists of various backgrounds, local initiatives and private individuals.
On 24 September 2016 the first Refugee Art Center event took place as part of Dresden's Interkulturelle Tage festival. The reading "Wortasyl – Geschichten zwischen Heimat und Fremde" ("Word asylum – stories from home and a foreign land") was organised by the initiative "Brücken schaffen", a neighbourhood welcome alliance, and gave refugees and migrants a chance to share their experiences and thoughts with others in the form of their own texts, stories and letters. The second Refugee Art Center event will start in December, entitled "The Whisperers". This will involve the dancer and choreographer Avatâra Ayuso developing a dance project with woman refugees.
Our project partners are Sächsische Flüchtlingsrat Dresden e.V., Ausländerrat Dresden e.V. and the City of Dresden's Commissioner for Integration and Foreign Nationals.
The Refugee Art Center is funded by the BAMF (Federal Office for Migration and Refugees).
Project ideas may be submitted at any time:
Tel.: 0351 2646238