I was born in Central Romania where multiple ethnicities live together harmoniously. My artistic activity is related to appropriation art and how I can use the images of the past to reflect on issues of today’s society and make them visible. You would think that this sounds lovely, an easy way to make you love your job and never feel like you are working. But is it in fact that simple? Unfortunately, this is just what people see on the surface. Reality is somehow different.
Where I come from, not all artists are famous. Not all of them have jobs or a regular income. We don’t always know where to begin, although we know we would love to make a significant impact on the world through our work.
But we are surely passionate and driven. Sometimes we just need one major thing to turn around our entire vision and truly dedicate ourselves to a higher purpose. For me, that major thing was Interreg.
I was a young, unemployed artist with a lot of talent and a lot of questions about how I can make a difference in the world. I came across an interesting project: Inclusive Art – Access to culture for disadvantaged children and youth. You can only grow with people and by helping people, so it felt like the right thing to do for me, at the time. Little did I know what an experience I was about to receive!
Yes, I learned about Interreg, about writing a project proposal, about handling a budget, applying for European funds and about Creative Entrepreneurship. All this was useful, but it was only the theoretical part.
What really fed my soul and changed my entire perception about myself and my future was actually writing a project in which children from disadvantaged communities would benefit from our artistic interventions. We were given a socio-cultural animation course in order to know how to work in these communities. My project took place in Banloc, Romania, and my main goal was to teach children the importance of their village, by means of artistic activities, related to the history of the place, the castle and park located right in front of their school.
I never realized how well I could work with people. And I did not just work with people, they were children and young people with disadvantages. But they were eager to learn, just like I was. Eager to become an actor of change in the society. I was impressed with how much of a difference you can make in someone’s life with such little effort, as long as you are fully involved and love what you do. I would have never thought that this project would have such an impact on how I saw things from then on. After the project ended, I saw the work of the children, the young participants and me, in the park, every day. My whole life expectations changed. I knew I did not have to wait for a change to be given to me anymore. I was the one who had to give himself a chance.
The Interreg project surprised me deeply. I started meeting new people, including other young artists from different fields. A short while after I took part in the Erasmus initiative, which shaped my views about multiculturalism and the impact it can have on our lives and ways of thinking. I am currently developing my career in Portugal and, guess what, I am also considering a career in education.
I would have never thought how easily you can transform your life by taking a leap of faith and making a few courageous moves. I have Interreg to thank for this.
What would it be like if you lived each day, each breath, as a work of art in progress? Imagine that you are a Masterpiece unfolding every second of every day, a work of art taking form with every breath.
– Thomas Crum
Inclusive Art – Access to culture for disadvantaged children and youth project worked with creative, graduated but unemployed young people, especially young artists, as well as disadvantaged youth and children from marginalized urban and rural areas, Roma children youth, children with parents working abroad as well as migrant children, youth and adults.
The project was delivered in partnership between Timișoara Intercultural Institute (Romania), Nevo Parudimos Association (Romania), Zrenjanin City Hall (Serbia) and the Center for Fine and Applied Arts Terra (Serbia).
The project was financed by the Interreg IPA Romania-Serbia Programme.