The Transnational Project Art and Social Change: a Path to recovery Meeting took part on 22nd – 23rd January in Palermo (Italy). The meeting was hosted by Comunità Terapeutica Casa dei Giovani. The Project partners VšĮ Socialiniai paramos projektai (Lithuania), Arts and Health South West (UK), Portraits of Recovery (UK) and Asilo Bianco Association (Italy) focused on the final evaluation of intellectual outputs, preparation for the final report and the Italian multiplier event. The representatives from the coordinating organization Vilniaus kolegija/ University of Applied Sciences – Project Manager Aurelija Kūgytė, researchers Milda Kuskienė and Rima Burneikaitė took part in the Meeting.
The international conference Contemporary Art, Care and Cultural Welfare was held in Palermo at a picture gallery Villa Zito, where Fondazione Sicilia presented a collection of paintings from 1700 till 1900.
The aims of the event were to show the results of the project, to share information, practices and experiences related to culture and contemporary art in educational and care settings to support social and health workers. The attendees of the event were stakeholders of the project (public and private organizations) from Palermo and other places at national and international levels.
The conference was conducted in Italian, with an English translation for foreign speakers. About 200 participants attended the event.
The conference speakers emphasised the healing role of art and culture and welcomed the innovative Art and Social Change project. Greetings were pronounced by:
– Artistic coordinator of Art and Social Change project and President of the Acrobazi Association Elisa Fulco.
– Deputy Mayor of Palermo City, Councilor for Productive Activities and Economic Development Sergio Marino.
– Director of the ASP (Provincial Healthcare Company) of Palermo Dr. Salvatore Russo.
– President and Founder of Casa di Giovani (Bagheria) Salvatore Lo Bue.
– Project Manager and a lecturer of Vilniaus kolegija/ University of Applied Sciences Aurelija Kūgytė.
– Director of the U.O.C. (Complex Operating Unit) Pathological Dependence Dr. Francesco Monterosso.
– Director of the Modern Art Gallery of Palermo Antonella Purpura.
The ideological leader of the project Art and Social Change, the curator of ASP Palermo and Youth House-Curating Gaetana Nuccia Cammara explained how the transformation from the project Palermo: uno sguardo a fuoco to Art and Social Change happened. The main aim was to use artistic practice to achieve personal and professional well-being.
The artists of the project Anne Clemence De Groleé, Enrica Borghi (President of the Asilo Bianco Association of Ameno) and Alex Coulter (Director of Art & Health South West) underlined the range of art impact. Alex Coulter highlighted the importance of sharing experience in order to encourage people to realize their ideas in art for well-being.
The workshop Recycling and Regeneration was provided by the project artist Enrica Borghi, based on the idea of waste and recycling: it was possible to create new objects from waste. Plastic was the material used to carry out the activity with the group.
The conference finished with an opening of the exhibition of Loredana Longo Contemporary Incursions by Sergio Troisi. Loredana Longo showed the artistic results of the 2nd Italian training round of the project.