Open discussion: Interpretation of the 20th century built heritage: aims and strategies

Back in the mid-20th century, heritage specialist Freeman Tilden pointed out that simply knowing historical fact is not enough to be motivated to appreciate and preserve a historical legacy. We need an interpretation that encourages the discovery of new meanings of the past in the present.

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The First CityTelling Festival in Kaunas: What not to Miss?

Kaunas and Kaunas District are full of stories. They are dramatic, weird or comic. Sometimes, they are sad and controversial. Stories fill the streets of the city and the little towns around, their windows, squares and houses. “Stories not only help us to discover the place in which we live, but they also help us to understand ourselves better, listen and empathize with others”, the organizers of the first CityTelling festival believe. Initiated by the team of Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022, the festival united two dozen institutions and initiatives of our city and its surrounding.

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Culture accessibility guide for a more open, comfortable and friendlier city has been introduced

Designing Happiness, a programme of “Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022”, introduces culture accessibility guide Kaunas visiems (Kaunas for All). It is the first publication of this kind dedicated to cultural organisations, object managers and event organisers that aim to make cultural objects and events more accessible to all groups of society, especially for people with special needs.

“Accessibility is a situation, when each person can use the infrastructure, services or equipment and engage in various activities independently, safely and conveniently.

Let’s imagine that Kaunas and Kaunas District are open, comfortable and friendly for everyone. That everyone can do here whatever they like and what makes them happy. Kaunas visiems is an in-depth approach to the need for the accessibility of culture, definitions of the most important concepts, tips and useful links to make the events and objects of attraction in Kaunas or the district accessible to younger and older people, healthy and the disabled, city residents and those who have arrived here,” – says curator of Designing Happiness and one of  the authors of the publication, Dr. Jūratė Tutlytė.

Today we communicate with each other in signs and symbols, we need information fast, it must be clear and easy to notice. Especially if it is needed by those who do not have much time, health or opportunities to explore their surroundings. Therefore, as an initiative of Kaunas 2022, Critical design agency, has introduced some enhancement to this guide by creating a universal marking system for Kaunas and other Lithuanian cities that provides information about accessibility of buildings, events, cultural and tourism objects for people with disabilities and / or other special needs.

“Marking characteristics of an object is important in two stages: when planning the trip and during the visit to the object.

When planning the journey, people with various needs look for information whether they will be able to visit that object in general and if they do, what to expect when they arrive. During the second stage, they look for help how to navigate in the space, so the signs serve as directions,” says Jonas Liugaila, strategist of Critical design agency and design facilitator.

Also, when developing the signs, the height in which they should be hung was also arranged in order to make them well visible or readable for those who stand, sit in the wheelchair, for the blind and visually impaired.

The sign system developed is coherent, universal and easily adapted and used. It is based on the principles of universal design. It features around 40 the most recent international signs indicating accessibility and limitations of cultural and tourism objects.

Uniform and unified in style, this marking system will be open to the society, it will be possible to use it in accordance with terms and conditions arranged in advance.


The Mythical Beast of Kaunas Has Emerged!

The results of an international image competition for the Beast of Kaunas are just in!

And the winner is:

Graphic designer from Kaunas Darius Petreikis with his dragon-go-shark-aurochs-turn-Stealth-fighter image!

“I focused myself on Kaunas 2022 logo. This is where I had started. And then I just could not stop… “says D. Petreikis.

“It is an image with inner constant progress embedded”, says creativity lecturer, founder of advertising, branding and social media agencies and one of the jury members Tomas Ramanauskas,.

Virginija Vitkienė, Kaunas 2022 CEO, sees Kaunas modernism architecture in the Beast’s curves. “And this Beast is not scary at all, look - it is so friendly and funny!” says she.

Rytis Zemkauskas, the creator of the Kaunas Beast: “I was so nervous. Will it work? Will people like it as much as we do? The first reactions are positive. The Beast went viral within a few hours. I am so happy now. Now on with the children’s book, on with the table game, the computer game, the public object... I am sending Darius the text of children’s book tonight”.

So here are the first glimpses of the long anticipated Modern Beast of Kaunas!


Exhibition of City Resident Items and Stories “Wild West of Kaunas” in the Kaunas City Museum

A part of the City Telling Festival, Kaunas 2022

One of the persistent stereotypes about Kaunas residents is their entrepreneurship and practicality. Although this is often said with a negative connotation, this characteristic of Kaunas residents has helped them to survive during various historical periods and to create Kaunas as it is today.

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Second STAR Cities Interregional Learning Session

The second Interregional Learning Session of STAR Cities took place in Kaunas, Lithuania, from 11 to 13 September 2019. Following the first meeting in Rome, the three-day event was placed under the theme of “ Locals & Communities “. It was hosted by Kaunas 2022, European Capital of Culture, one of the partners of the project.

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Kaunas – UNESCO Creative City of Design

Already 4 years have passed since Kaunas became the first city in Eastern and Middle Europe to be nominated as UNESCO City of Design and joined the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

The UNESCO Creative Cities Network was established in 2004 to promote cooperating among cities which are focused on creativity as a strategic factor for social, cultural and economic development.

What‘s so special about the design and architecture in Kaunas, so it became one of 17 UNESCO Creative Cities of Design? All answers are in this video.

 

 


Kaunas 2022 announces an open call to establish the most important partnerships of the European Capital of Culture

Full details and documents can be found here.

Kaunas European Capital of Culture 2022 institution announces an open call for Lithuanian and foreign cultural organisations to jointly create the programme of the European Capital of Culture programme for 2020–2022. Read more


ConTempo – a New Performing Arts Festival in Kaunas

Shorter days and cooler weather are usually the first things that comes to mind when we remember the summer is about to end. However, Kaunas offers a way out and invites you to a new international performing arts festival on 23-25 of August. ConTempo - this is the name of it, which refers not only to the contemporary program, but also to the Kaunas city journey from temporary to contemporary capital. The ConTempo festival was initiated by Kaunas – European Capital of Culture 2022 and organized by joined forces of the Kultūros Platforma and the Lithuanian Dance Information Center. The first edition of the festival features exceptional, bold, provocative and open projects presented by well-known artists from Belgium, Switzerland, Israel, Italy, Spain and of course Lithuania. As many as 12 events will be presented in Kaunas city and district within three days and only one of them will have admission fee.

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On October 17–24, the first CityTelling festival will start in Kaunas and Kaunas district

Why the CityTelling Festival? 

Stories are tales, alive in our memory.

Stories that keep our culture alive. Stories that keep the history of our city alive.

Not only stories help to know the past, but they also teach how to communicate, better understand and feel one another.

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