Photography is a very powerful art and a universal mean of expression that transcends the language and crosses the borders between men.
The project “Frames of European Common Life” that took place from September 2013 till May 2015 in the framework of Grundtvig Educational Partnerships aimed at fostering integration and development of European belonging through the use of photography. The partnership :CIDI (Italy, coordinator), Crossing Borders (Denmark), The Greener Bourgas Foundation (Bulgaria), Fundacja Centrum Actywnoŝci Twόrczej (Poland) and Enteyxis (Greece) created a European community of amateurs photographers that shared technical experience and best practice and worked together to use the photography medium as an instrument of social survey and reflect upon themes of common European interest.
The partners organized amateur workshops to teach photography techniques and realized outdoor photography sessions to take pictures.
Learners and trainers of every country communicated and shared opinions and advice for the whole duration of the partnerships, thanks to skype conferences and a dedicated forum.
At the end of the workshops every partner set up a final exhibition to show the participants’ works and to sensitize a large audience on the workshops themes. Every final exhibition was visited by at least one learner and one member/trainer of the organization of all the other country involved in the partnership.
Every partner was free to choose the themes to be addressed by the pictures. In particular the participants has been asked to focus on:
• Valorization of local resources
Frames gave the opportunity to trainees, trainers and staff to discover a transnational educational experience, engage creatively in the project and express their European identity in relation with their local and national one while reflecting and communicating upon themes of common European interest with the participants from the partners countries who were working on the same project. The project linked together photographic and adult education associations with different agendas, vision and goals and enabled their trainers and learners to exchange experiences, practices and knowledge and contribute to develop a sense of belonging to common European ideals. Enteyxis considers the Frames partnership as a cultural and educational resource that has a huge potential to develop further in the future.
Participants were very enthusiastic to actualize the goals of the project : to valorise the local resources, present their identity and European belonging through the use of photography. The workshops resulted to an interesting exhibition of 70 photos that was shown not only to the local community but to the partners that visited Photometria Festival, trainers and trainees. Trainers and trainees who visited the partners exhibitions discovered through the mobilities an opportunity to
Above all the experience of the interaction between participants who became members of the online Frames community and interacted with each other by presenting their photos is invaluable.
The project offered many opportunities for cultural awareness and expression. Trainees had to present their photography work in every educational session and according to their commitment, quality of work and consistency, were selected to participate in the mobilities. They were creative in expressing their ideas regarding the valorization of local resources through photography and they became appreciative for the expression of ideas through photography of the partner’s trainees. In this process they became more aware of their own cultural context and the cultural context of the partners. Partners, trainers and trainees had to present their activities to the others during the mobility visits. Trainees had to present their photography work, so this gave him/her the opportunity to improve their communication skills and review their work in a broader context. Trainees, trainers and coordinators attended and participated in local festivals and learned about other cultures, traditions and cultural heritage.
The first partners’ meeting and exhibition took place from 4.9.2014 - 8.9.2014 in Leszno, Poland organised by FUNDACJA CENTRUM AKTYWNOŚCI TWÓRCZEJ.
The second partners’ meeting and exhibition took place from 7.6.2014- 15.6.2014 in Ioannina, Greece organised by Entefxis in the framework of Photometria festival.
The thrid partners’ meeting and exhibition took place from 8.1.2015- 12.1.2015 in Copenhagen, Denmark organised by Crossing Borders.
The fourth partners’ meeting and exhibition took place from 15.4.2015 - 19.4.2015 in Burgas, Bulgaria organised by The Greener Bourgas Foundation.
The fifth partners’ meeting and exhibition took place from 14.5.2015 - 18.5.2015 in Senigallia, Italy organised by Cidi.
All photos from Frame participants