Europa Nostra
#4 - 1 May 2020
Dear Collegues & Friends,
On a very special International Labour Day, taking place during the COVID19 global pandemic, we wish to send a heartfelt message of thanks to people, who, like you and us, have been (digitally) working hard for the cause of our shared cultural heritage. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, it has been a challenge to adapt to new working conditions, very often remotely and in self-isolation. But challenges also trigger creativity, innovation, combined with healthy doses of humour (like demonstrated in this heartwarming performance by the Norwegian Radio Orchestra!). We have indeed already witnessed a remarkable resilience and a major boost in digital communication across the world of culture and cultural heritage.
And yet, many smaller heritage organisations and professionals across Europe and the world are lacking the resources or the skills to embrace such a rapid digital transition. This is why we need more solidarity, more peer-learning and more capacity building in Europe and across the world. As the European Voice of Civil Society committed to cultural heritage, working in partnership with all members of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3., we are committed to promoting the urgent need for all heritage stakeholders to build their capacity to face the huge challenges and changes to our society, economy and environment, now and in the future.
For this reason, we are delighted to welcome today in our Agora a key member of our European Heritage Alliance, Harry Verwayen, the Executive Director of Europeana, the champion of digital and digitised cultural heritage in Europe and beyond. In his video message specially recorded for our Agora, Harry Verwayen is sharing his inspiring thoughts about how to deal with these huge challenges ahead of us: "This is not a sprint, but a marathon, therefore we should take both the fast and the slow lane while adapting our work and our life to the “new normal". You can also find more inspiration, support and guidance from Europeana for working safely during the covid-19 crisis here.
The next edition of our Europa Nostra Digital Agora weekly update will be sent to you exceptionally on Saturday 9 May, to coincide with the Europe Day marking the 70th anniversary of the Schuman Declaration. In 1950, only 5 years after the end of WWII, this visionary document started the on-going process of European collaboration and integration. On Europe Day 2020, we wish to celebrate the power of culture and cultural heritage for the recovery and the future of Europe. At 12:00 CET, we invite you to join a "Europe Day Webinar", co-hosted by Europeana and Europa Nostra and with the involvement and support of other members of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3.
Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, and Luca Jahier, President of the European Economic and Social Committee, have already confirmed their participation in the Webinar. Recalling the key messages of our Paris Manifesto adopted last October, the aim of this webinar is to encourage European leaders and citizens to place culture and heritage, together with education, at the heart of Europe's recovery and revival.
Another major European cultural online event will take place on 9 May: the Europe Day Online Concert “Hope through Music” performed by the European Union Youth Orchestra conducted by Maestro Vasily Petrenko and available worldwide via YouTube. Europa Nostra is delighted to be a key partner and promoter of this highly symbolic concert which will also contribute to our on-going Ode2Joy Challenge.
Stay tuned next week for more practical information about the programme for our Europe Day Webinar and EUYO Europe Day Online Concert on 9 May!
But before Europe Day, stay tuned on 7 May for some uplifting news when the European Commission and Europa Nostra will proudly announce this year’s winners of the European Heritage Awards / Europa Nostra Awards!
We hope to virtually welcome you to our planned activities on 9 May, and wish you an enriching and inspiring virtual participation in the Europa Nostra Digital Agora! We also thank you for sharing your input for inclusion in our and your Agora (att. Manon Richard, which remains “a work in progress”.
On behalf of the Europa Nostra Agora Team,
Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović
Secretary General
Belgium: #BOZARATHOME - Brussel’s Center of Fine Arts is offering an artistic programming that shows its artistic and cultural diversity: live music, expo, sofa screenings, dance, lectures and debates, readings and many more artistic expressions that make BOZAR so rich. From your living room you can continue to share moments of deep emotions despite the circumstances we are going through. Read also “If ever art could heal the world, the time is now”, a forceful and inspiring plea by Paul Dujardin, BOZAR CEO. In this article, he states that “art will be vital in healing the wounds inflicted by the crisis” and calls on “the world to save art, only to ensure that the roles will be reversed afterwards”. 
France: #Culturecheznous - The French Ministry of Culture has launched an extended version of the website #culturecheznous, which was initiated following the confinement measured. This online platform gathers over 700 suggestions of online content from 500 cultural and artistic actors across France, such as exhibitions, museums, films, documentaries, podcasts, concerts, plays, books, video games, or artistic practices. Immerse yourself in the restoration work of Notre-Dame Cathedral, go on a virtual tour of pharmaceutical art & heritage, or enjoy a good laugh with replays of Opéra Comique performances!
Ireland: “Reflections on Resilience” - Human resilience is as old as history itself, which is why the National Museum of Ireland is curating a new online gallery of objects reflecting themes of resilience, endurance and hope. The museum’s team reflected on their current shared resilience in the face of this challenge, and examined the national collection through this lens. They have selected a range of objects and specimens – some well-known, many less so and many not on display but from their reserve collections. You can also check the other online exhibitions on the themes of Decorative Arts & History, Country Life, Natural History and Archaeology, or take a virtual tour of the Natural History Museum.
Switzerland: Montreux Jazz Festival - This legendary festival created in 1967 takes place for two weeks every summer on the shores of Lake Geneva. 50 Festival concerts are currently available to stream for free, including performances by Ray Charles, Johnny Cash, Nina Simone, Marvin Gaye, Deep Purple, Carlos Santana, and more. From the very beginning, the Festival’s founder Claude Nobs has recorded all its concerts using the latest technologies. This unique collection of audiovisual archives has been recognised by UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register. Since 2017, the Montreux Jazz Digital Project has been entirely preserving and digitalizing these archives, including more than 11.000 hours of live music.
Eastern European Movies - This website allows you to watch or download popular Eastern European movies with subtitles in English, French, German and other languages. The collection includes famous Eastern European films, that received multiple Awards at major European and World Film Festivals, as well as rare finds. The membership plan starts at a price as low as €5 for a full day access to all the movies, which you can filter by genre, country or decade. We invite you to check the selection of historical movies telling the lesser-known story of our continent’s Eastern part.
MuseumWeek is the worldwide festival for cultural institutions on social media taking place on 11-17 May. This year’s edition, highlighting the value of togetherness, is based on the format “7 days, 7 themes, 7 hashtags”: 
#heroesMW 11 May, #CultureInQuarantineMW on 12 May, #togetherMW on 13 May, #MuseumMomentsMW on 14 May, #climateMW on 15 May, #technologyMW on 16 May and #dreamsMW on 17 May. Europa Nostra is proud to figure, alongside UNESCO, among the partners of the MuseumWeek. Discover the programme and prepare your creative and engaging posts according to the hashtags.
#TogetherInTravel - The World Travel & Tourism Council is encouraging everyone to fill feeds with amazing stories about the world, from around the world. At a time when new travel stories cannot be made, let’s take a moment to reflect on our most special, inspiring travel memories and share them with the world using #TogetherInTravel. As a community we can fill social media with stories, images, videos, and more to keep the spirit of travel alive and better understand each other, our shared history and culture. Read more and watch the video here.
#OperaTellers - This Instagram storytelling video series features contributions and reflections on an opera piece, with the aim to promote dialogue among cultures, though music. Watch the first episode dedicated to “Turandot” from Giacomo Puccini and check their Instagram stories for more fun facts by the contributors.
#IMD2020 - The International Museum Day will take place digitally on 18 May. With the theme “Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion”, the event aims at celebrating the different perspectives that make up the museum communities, and championing tools for identifying and overcoming bias in what they display and the stories they tell. On this occasion, ICOM has prepared a list of possible digital activities for museums, ensuring diversity and inclusion, with great tips to engage your audiences on social media. Get ready to use the hashtags #MuseumsAndChill and #Museums4Equality and the IMD gifs to animate your posts, by typing “ICOM” in the GIF search bar. Share your activities on the interactive map of events and check the Communication Kit to successfully reach your audiences.
#OneGoodThing - This initiative aims to give a greater reach to positive actions, connections and solidarity during the Corona outbreak, and thus defend the core principles of democracy and fundamental rights across Europe and around the world. Have you helped others today?
  • Publish a post/picture/video of #OneGoodThing you did with a call to action and other hashtags/messages you are usually using
  • Name three people or organisations and tag @OneGoodThing20
IMPORTANT: Do not forget to join & contribute to our conversation on social media with the hashtag #EuropaNostraAgora! Every day, we are also promoting past winners of our #EuropeanHeritageAwards until we announce the 2020 winners on 7 May. Stay tuned on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to discover their success stories!
New Technologies and the Preservation of Cultural Heritage”: The Art Newspaper is co-hosting a live YouTube discussion on 1-3 May, in cooperation with the Factum Foundation and Il Giornale dell’Arte. Museum directors, artificial intelligence (AI) specialists, writers, professors of science and architecture theory and other thinkers are meeting online to discuss what can be done with digital technology, now and in the future. The discussion is free to attend and will be broadcast live on The Art Newspaper’s YouTube channel. Viewers are invited to submit their questions related to the 3 topics of discussion: 1) The Future of Museums, Exhibitions and the Objects they Display ; 2) The Circulation of Objects: the Politics of Recording, Training, Preserving and Sharing ; 3) An Intimacy with the Physical World: New Technologies Generating New Knowledge. More detailed programme here.
The House of European History presents a new edition of its Debating History series on 4 May (18:00 - 20:00 CET) on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. Scholars from across Europe will discuss the changes and challenges that followed 1945, and the significance of that year in Europe’s 20th century history and today. The discussion will examine through multiple perspectives the diverse and sometimes diverging experiences of Europeans, the profound transformations that affected the continent and world after 1945, and reflect on their impact and resonance today. The debate can be watched live on YouTube, more information and speakers here. The House of European History has also started a project aimed at documenting Europeans’ responses of solidarity, hope, community building and creativity in dealing with the current pandemic, the dramatic situations, the needs and emergencies it has given rise to. Check here if you wish to contribute to the collection of stories, objects, images and sounds that will help tell this story when ‘all this is over’.
Cultural Heritage: new risks, new responses- Call for communications: this event, taking place on 12-13 November 2020 in Paris, will focus on "new" risks to heritage, understood in the broadest sense, including its tangible, intangible, digital and natural dimensions. Ahead of the conference, the General Directorate of Heritage of the French Ministry of Culture, in partnership with the National Heritage Institute and the CNRS are launching a call for communications (text of 1,000/1,500 characters) which can be submitted by public and private heritage stakeholders as well as scientists. Deadline: 30 May 2020.
The ENCATC Members Talk is a new initiative aiming at exploring and pooling knowledge to overcome cultural management and policy pressing issues due to the covid-19 pandemic. Held each Friday starting on 8 May, from 14:30-15:30 (CET), in a true network spirit, participants will put forth new ideas, innovations, and collaborations for all members to be inspired and have practical ways to come out of this crisis stronger and more united than ever before. Check the programme and become a member to join! For more cultural tips, subscribe to the ENCATC Creative #StayHome Pack, the email update compiling some positive phenomena and innovative ideas from the cultural and educational community that are being generated due to the Covid-19 challenges.
SPAB - The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings located in London, UK - offers a selection of online learning opportunities. From CPD (Continuing Professional Development) webinars to member skill-share sessions to evening lectures, there is something for everyone and you can join in from wherever you are. While you can find the full list of online events here, we would like to draw your attention to the following sessions:
Following the videoconference on 8 April 2020 of European Union Ministers of Culture and Media, organised on the initiative of Croatian Presidency and presided by Nina Obuljen Koržinek, Croatian minister of culture, with the participation of Věra Jourová, Vice President of the European Commission for Values and Transparency, Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth and Thierry Breton, Commissioner for the Internal Market, 26 Ministers signed a joint Declaration in which they deliver a set of sustainable measures to assist the cultural sector during and beyond the crisis.
Over 130 Ministers and Vice-Ministers of Culture joined the online meeting convened by UNESCO on 22 April to discuss actions to support the cultural sector in face of the unprecedented upheaval caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The ministers reaffirmed their commitment to intergovernmental dialogue and international solidarity in order to strengthen and unite their efforts. Read more here.
The European Commission is setting up two platforms for knowledge sharing in relation to the COVID-19 impact on the cultural and creative sectors at EU level, as announced by EU Commissioner Mariya Gabriel at the video conference of EU ministers of culture and media on 8 April. The platform for EU Member States was launched on 24 April. It will allow culture ministries to exchange good practices, while the second one (publicly available) - to be launched next week - will help people in the cultural and creative sectors share information and solutions more easily.
European Parliament: On 21 April, MEPs wrote a letter to EU Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton, and EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, calling for additional EU help and action for the ravaged media and culture sectors. They specifically ask the EU to:
  • Support the media, with advertising revenues dropping as much as 80%
  • Make sure EU support reaches culture SMEs, individual creators and charities
  • Create an emergency fund for media, earmark structural funds for culture, and beef up the guarantee instrument
For more information, replay the Live discussion with Sabine Verheyen, MEP and Chair of the EP Culture Committee on the impact of the coronavirus crisis on young people and the EU’s creative industry and watch the video in support for artists affected by the pandemic.
Climate, Heritage and Intellectual Property”: in an open letter on 26 April on the occasion of World Intellectual Property Day 2020, EIFL (Electronic Information for Libraries) and the world’s leading library, archives, and museums organizations have called on the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and its Member States to respond to the need for international copyright laws that will empower cultural institutions to prevent further loss of worldwide cultural heritage due to rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and other disasters linked to global warming. Read the letter and become a signatory here.
Now Europe needs culture and culture needs Europe”: on 28 April, REMA (the network for Early Music in Europe), together with 39 European networks (including Europa Nostra, ERIH, ENCATC or Culture Action Europe) representing over 5,000 organisations in 88 countries, addressed an open letter to the leaders of the EU Institutions, EU heads of State or Government, and EU Ministers of Culture. In this letter, the signatories recall that culture should be placed at the heart of the European project, which is fore and foremost a cultural and humanistic construction, and call on the EU and its Member States to urgently support culture, live performances and artists in their recovery plans and to invest in a Europe of Culture.
The ALIPH Foundation will allocate an initial envelope of 1 Million USD emergency funding for cultural heritage and surrounding communities in conflict and post-conflict areas to help weather the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Heritage sites represent important sources of employment for local operators, cultural institutions or associations, as well as experts, engineers, builders, and artisans. The funding will allow local operators to defray their operations, health, and staff costs. Information technology acquisition and online learning programs will be covered in order to bridge the digital divide and build resilience for the future. Emergency heritage preventive protection and income generation projects will also be supported. More information and application here.
EUNIC - the EU National Institute for Culture has compiled an overview of how the European cultural sector, as one of the most heavily affected sectors, is responding to the current coronavirus outbreak and subsequent crisis. Following a survey among EUNIC Global members, the overview provides useful insight into the measures taken at EU and Member States levels to mitigate the loss of income for artists and creative professionals.
Sweden: The European Commission has approved under EU State aid rules a SEK 420 million (approximately €38 million) Swedish scheme that compensates companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak for the loss of revenue or additional costs related to the cancellation or postponement of cultural events. The scheme will offer direct grants covering 75% of their loss of revenue or additional costs up to SEK 1 million (approx. €90,600), and 50% for the part of the losses above SEK 1 million. Aid may be granted up to a maximum amount of SEK 10 million (approx. €906,000) per beneficiary. Read more here.
Heritage in Motion is a multimedia competition for the creators and users of films, games, apps and websites on themes related to Europe’s heritage, cultural and natural, tangible and intangible. It is an initiative of Europa Nostra together with the European Museum Academy and powered by Europeana. Heritage in Motion grants awards and celebrates the best multimedia achievements and products – through varied, creative and innovative means - in order to draw attention to the value of Europe’s cultural and natural heritage in all its facets. Submit your application by 1 June 2020 and win the chance to showcase your successful project!
Art in our Heart WEB: The Life Beyond Tourism Travel to Dialogue Movement is supporting the Italian arts sector to restart activities that have been hardly hit by the current pandemic. Artists can benefit from a free membership to the Movement until the end of 2020, giving access to an online platform with the possibility of opening an online store and displaying virtual exhibitions. With a network of more than 14,000 users in 111 countries, this initiative contributes to greater visibility and protection of the Italian heritage and the creativity that distinguishes Italian culture in the world. More information here.
You are receiving this informative email because you have subscribed to the Europa Nostra e-newsletter. You can unsubscribe by sending an email to If you would like to read our Privacy Policy please click here:
The European Voice of Civil Society committed to Cultural Heritage
Lange Voorhout 35, 2514 EC The Hague, The Netherlands | +31 (0)70 302 40 50 |
Brussels Office
Rue de Treves/Trierstraat 45, 1040 Brussels, Belgium | T +32 (0)2 486 25 26 |
Proud founding member and coordinator of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3
With the support of the Creative Europe programme of the European Union
© 2020 Europa Nostra