As every periphery is its own centre, Centriphery will give the citizens of the so-called “periphery” a central voice in exploration and transformation of local myths and empower them to participate in the re-creation of local identities and European narratives.

Centriphery is a multi-layered interdisciplinary, inclusive and accessible, European project engaging professional international artists in an intensive dialogue with local artists, participating citizens (citizen artists) in decentralised regions.

By fusing European narratives with regional narratives and myths the project aims to significantly strengthen the European principles of unity in diversity, cohesion, inclusion and access and the common European idea through regional cultural identities. Consequently, Centriphery is focusing on European regions esp. decentralized rural areas. By connecting artistic research, transnational cultural exchange and performative, participatory and cocreational art, the project will identify common values of intangible cultural heritage, local and regional myths and their relations to and for the European idea. Using stories as bridges between past and future, contemporary regional and European narratives will be developed.

The stories we tell have a large potential for building bridges between the past and the future. A story or myth is a format – a very compact format – for registering sets of “best practices” for how to act under certain given circumstances. A story always proposes an attitude. It also contains a time dimension: things happen in a sequence, there is a before and an after. Therefore, opposed to most formats of preserving knowledge, stories and myths come with emotional intelligence. All the big epics are basically collections of stories. What they also are: Encyclopaedias containing and preserving, in an accessible format the collected knowledge of the cultures in which they have come to being. Mnemotechnically advanced, epics are nondigital information banks for which you don’t even need to have a written language.

On the other hand, narratives – though often referring to the past – through their fictional character (all circumstances in all stories are “proposed” circumstances) stories propose directions and solutions for a reality not yet existing. Telling each other stories, we draw outlines for the future. Starting out with both traditional and more recent myths and narratives of the participating regions and developing contemporary and future ones, Centriphery can be a European integration project, through stories. Looking at: how the big myth, the “Story of Europe”, relates to the local myths; what the local stories will bring to the “Big Myth of Europe”, what will they reveal, and what will they contribute?

Using the local myths and narratives as a bridge to the future, Centriphery will develop various performative and artistic creations incorporating an interdisciplinary and participatory community-driven approach. Additionally, Centriphery will implement an artistic capacity building programme and a regional exchange programme to initiate collective interpretation, knowledge transfer and sustainable development processes.

Centriphery connects artistic research, regional development and artistic and cultural implementation in form of collaborations between European artists and citizens, and local experts of decentralized neighbourhoods or regions.

The partner network includes prestigious festivals and institutions in nine European countries: Festival der Regionen (Austria), Cultura Nova (The Netherlands), Dansehallerne (Denmark), European Capital of Culture Rijeka 2020 (Croatia), Asociatia Prin Banat (Romania), La Manufacture (France), Anda&Fala (Portugal/The Azores), Fondatsiya za Nova Kultura (Bulgaria) and Espoon Kaupunginteatteri (Finland).

Centriphery has been designed in closely inter-linked phases and will be professionally managed by an experienced team, collaborating with local networks and partners.

Centriphery is an European project funded under the Creative Europe framework by the European Union.