Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022!

Contemporary Capital

At the beginning of 2017, Kaunas was awarded the title of the European Capital of Culture for 2022. Together with various cultural organisations, artists and creatives, we develop a vast, endless and borderless programme that we call the Contemporary Capital.
The entire time remaining until 2022 is a common journey of Kaunas and Kaunas District from temporary to contemporary!

Kaunas 2022: “From temporary to contemporary”

This invitation to join us on our journey is also a call to start a dialogue as well. To speak with the history and identity of our city. Thanks to the title of the temporary capital (1919–1940), Kaunas became a modern European city. Today we have another opportunity achieved for us not by the politicians, but by professionals and enthusiasts of culture. We strive to maintain the same passion awakening a city which is modern, innovative, friendly to its residents and guests.

Programme areas: confussion, confluence, consciousness

The artistic programme of Kaunas 2022 is visualisation of a journey from the CONFUSSION through the CONFLUENCE towards the CONSCIOUSNESS. Our goal is for the programme to include as much visual arts, music, theatre, literature, new media and technologies and interdisciplinary arts as possible. Yet it is not about the genres, but rather the most relevant topics concerning Kaunas, Lithuania and Europe. We cannot move forward without waking up the memory, promoting an advanced approach to heritage, inclusion, respect to multiculturalism and differentness.

Because if we want to be CONTEMPORARY, we have to overcome the CONFUSSION of our fragmented history and censored mentality also understanding that the CONFLUENCE at which we live is not only that of two largest rivers of Lithuania, but also of very different people and ideas that sometimes clash with one another. Having understood that, we will cultivate our CONSCIOUSNESS, that will pave a productive way towards a more successful community that can be found on the European map.

Confusion

Memory Office and Modernism for the Future are inconvenient programmes that deal with undeservedly forgotten topics. One of the most important aspects of these programmes is actualisation of memory. We have in mind a once lucrative Jewish culture, Kaunas fortress and other heritage of the tsar era, as well as the industrial heritage created during the Soviet occupation. How should it be awakened, used and activated?

Confluence

Programmes Design for Happiness and Emerging Kaunas encourage cooperation in the areas of art, science, culture, technology, and business and their projects. Everything is really very simple: having united ideas and joined our forces, we can achieve more. More openness and accessibility, more international relations, art and culture in public spaces of Kaunas and Kaunas district. More of the happy people!

Consciousness

Fluxus Labs programme is designed to awaken people of Kaunas microdistricts and towns of Kaunas district and it is closely related to the programme for culture professionals Wake It, Shake It. In the latter, we learn about audience development, including into our projects as diverse communities as possible, developing creativity and collaborative practices. Fluxus Labs includes more open and tightly-knitted neighbourhoods, as well as community art projects, colourful community celebrations, volunteering and hospitality born out of neighbourly conversations.

Tempo Academy of Culture is a lab that teaches cultural professionals, community activators, youth and volunteers about how to collaborate.
Can you believe that Kaunas has not had its legend up until now?! The

Mythical Beast of Kaunas is a programme for creation of the collective narrative, during which local residents create the contemporary legend of Kaunas and Kaunas district and will celebrate it during the major events of 2022 together with the entire Europe.


Mission

The mission of Kaunas 2022 organisation is to be a selfless intermediary. We do not have a purpose to established ourselves until the end of time. Far from it. We strive to unite cultural operators and creators in Kaunas district, Lithuania and Europe for a common goal: a process that reveals the variety of cultures in Europe, and the creation of which would be joined by local people and partners from various sectors.

AIM AND VISION of the European Capital of Culture project:

In the spirit of this community process, we strive for Kaunas and Kaunas District to be known in Europe as:

  • a place of happy people and positive experiences, where local talents are appreciated;
  • a community that can act and share, its residents are sensitive to the local heritage, proud of it and also participants creating the contemporary face of the city and the region;
  •  a place where culture is accessible and available for everyone because of friendly solutions of infrastructure, creative public spaces and appealing content;
  • a place with a strong cultural sector: professional, visible, appreciated, socially responsible, networked on local and international levels, partner with social, educational, business and IT sectors and communities;
  • point of attraction for travellers: interesting because of its relevant contemporary culture and international projects of contemporary art, community art, design and interdisciplinary areas.