Asociația Culturală pentru Intervenție Artistică (ACIA)
Our landscape project is meant to explore a National Park located near the oldest spa resort from S-E Europe, Herculane Baths (Băile Herculane). Alongside, we intend to build an open source network for nature preservation in Romania. Serving a common purpose, artists will co-create together with local communities, programmers, scientists and activists leading educational campaigns on environmental awareness. The project will unite active civic networks in future environmental public policies.
Domogled - Valea Cernei National Park
Orșova - Băile Herculane - Cerna Sat
South of Romania
Massacres of nature still happen globally, despite the devastating health and climate change effects. Illegal logging in Romania has not been solved in decades, on the contrary, it increases (at least 20 million cubic meters of wood disappear every year without a trace, argues the National Forests Inventory). Domogled National Park is a protected area. Its proximity to Herculane Baths creates the premises for a valuable link. Residents and tourists enjoy the natural wealth and can directly contribute to its preservation. The area is taken over by economical and political interests; the communities are discouraged; local administrations take fatal decisions in environmental issues; garbage still lies in rivers and forests; small villages in the area don't have access to education.
Anthropocentrism is considered by some environmentalists to be the main cause of the ecological crisis, invoked by humanity's need to develop and exploit most areas of the planet. Illegal logging and increasing pollution in Romania have already “woken up” active citizens. By involving artists, scientists and activists in the public awareness of environmental issues, various structures of education, research, activism can unify. Eco-creativity can guide citizens to value the meaning of a thrown bottle or a cut tree, therefore to take action, to connect. We believe this project may be vital for advancing the path of democratization and transparency in national decision-making policies.
Domogled 2.0 brings the local communities of a culturally and economically disadvantaged area together with artists, activists, scientists, programmers and journalists. By exploring the natural world through artistic co-creation and preservation, the individuals can physically empathize in protecting their own environment. The programmers will digitize a mapping system of the Domogled National Park, which can serve as a tool for engaging all active communities, who lack a common system for mapping informational and legal background and environmental activities across Romania.
1. Orientation - ongoing research, national community mapping, further partnership development, digital archiving and access to information, forest mapping for interventions, identification of voluntary action groups in the local communities;
2. Mapping and connecting - ongoing informational network between the three partner NGOs (along with public administration and forest administration partners and various supporters) and the recruited interested civil society and active participatory artistic interventions;
3. Maintenance - ongoing volunteer calls and extension of the environmental mapping community.
The expected results lay in the highlighted natural heritage, the balance of the relationship between the local communities and the protected forest. The increase in participation of the general public in a process of protection and preservation of the environment.
Specific results: several co-created land and waste artworks on various paths of a protected area, active participation of the local communities and the established artists and activists communities, national and international press releases, an applied dialogue structure between the local administration, the National Park Administration, the local communities and the involved professionals (artists, scientists, landscapers, activists), an opensource platform for further engagement in different disadvantaged, exploited areas.
To strengthen Europe's democracy, people have to be healthy and protect their last pockets of unique biodiversity and cultural heritage. The Romanian forests are already known for their contribution to the air we all breathe (”The Amazon of Europe”). Last year, two foresters were killed in Romania because they caught thieves cutting wood. They’re just a small part of the hundreds of locals, foresters and activists who have been harmed for taking a stance against illegal logging. Civic actions are needed in this frenetic exploitation of all natural resources (staged silently and opaque behind curtains of big companies and politicians). Knowledge, safeguarding actions and active participation may bring democracy back to the people and the awareness back to our surrounding environment.
My ideas are specific to artistic interventions aimed at preserving spaces and places in Romania, in terms of ecological activism and regaining public space. Creativity through ecosophy brought as an alliance of people who start with an ideal and implement it in different life aspects can be the solution for resilience. It is clear that the administration of the environment and the representative public institutions are either ignoring the imminent disasters of this human-made influence on nature or are fully overwhelmed.
A project like Domogled 2.0 brings to the public attention the importance of nature and art, which could lead to a sustainable fusion of the two areas, exploring both the potential of a community to be responsible for the natural environment and ecological art.
Funding requested from Civic Europe
Fees (researchers, artists, scientists, landscapers, designers) - 18 000
Digital infrastructure - 3 000
Traveling costs - 5 000
Accommodation costs - 7 000 euro
Personnel costs - 12 000 euro
Advice regarding the way we should access the local communities regarding the importance of safeguarding our environment.