IETM Vilnius Plenary Meeting 2009
20 years have passed after the remapping of Europe started in 1989 with the fall of the Berlin Wall. The end of the 90s witnessed the East as interesting, inspiring, astonishing and desired by the rest of the world. Various tools to incorporate the Eastern stage into old Europe have been created, various advices from people with know-how started flowing.
New mutual colonisation began – to allow the East to work in the West physically and/or administratively and to inspire the West to “regain soul“. But now we can look back (without anger) and ask what were those changes like? Were they real changes indeed? What was expected from the East and were all Eastern promises fulfilled? And – why is the East not sexy anymore?
The IETM Autumn Plenary Meeting in Vilnius October 8-11 2009 put a new point on IETM meetings map. East was the direction. East, which became very sexy two decades ago, right after the Berlin Wall came down. East, which started losing its glamour as the iron curtain sank into history.
The meeting in Vilnius dealt with Eastern promises on one hand and Western expectations on the other. It explored new colonisation of all sorts, going from the East to the West and vice versa; and the territories culture and art have colonised in our own societies.
The meeting took place at Menu spaustuve (Arts Printing House), a performing arts centre and creative industries harbour, which “colonised” an abandoned printing house back in 2000.
And, yes, last but not least, Vilnius was the European Capital of Culture that year.