Art of adaptation - Manual of artistic tool for migrants

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2. CASE STUDIES ABOUT ART INTERVENTIONS WITH MIGRANTS 2.1. ART OF ADAPTATION: ART JOURNEY THROUGH THE PHASES OF ADAPTATION Vera Várhegyi, Elan Interculturel, Ariadne coordinator

SOME INFO ON THE PILOTS: What was its name? Art of adaptation Who was it proposed by (which partner)? Elan Interculturel When did it take place? 16th to 27th January 2012 What was the main art branch (if there was one)? Visual arts, dance, theatre Text prepared by: Elan Interculturel

Abstract This case study describes the workshop “Art of adaptation” organized by Elan Intercul‐ turel in January 2012 Paris. There were three special features of this workshop. First, the workshop was a blend of intercultural training and art workshop. It focused explicitly on adaptation and the sessions were constructed on purpose to tackle different phases and aspects of the adaptation process. Second, what allowed for such a top-down construction was that all four facilitators and artists involved were themselves immigrants in Paris. This meant that the skeleton of the workshop was not built on cold theoretical assumptions on what adaptation should be, but was also backed up by the personal experiences of the facilitators’ team. The third feature is what allowed us to tackle explicitly the themes of adaptation: the participants. The group consisted of 10 women coming from 9 different countries over four continents, which seems to be a highly diverse group. At the same time the level of education was very high, and all participants had a strong command of English – the language of the workshop. Finally most participants were in a relatively safe economic environment, we could focus on how to make the best of the experience of migration and not on survival or complex legal issues. The workshop will be presented chronologically through the eight sessions.

Intro – a “minimal paradigm of cross-cultural mobility” Our departure point was to work on a “minimal paradigm of cross-cultural mobility” that is, to deal with the challenges triggered by the change of culture and context. We believed that even when there are no legal uncertainties, no immediate material, physical needs, questions of safety, adaptation can still open a Pandora box of unsuspected challenges and threats, that are often neglected when hidden by needs seemingly more of an emergency.

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