Europe Day – European Union National Institutes for Culture

9 May 2019

European cultural institutes join forces to promote and fund European culture in the UK, in particular writers and artists from Europe coming to UK festivals in 2019.

Established in 2007, the EUNIC London network (European Union National Institutes for Culture) brings together 31 cultural institutes and embassies from the member states of the European Union in London. Its members share knowledge and resources in order to develop partnerships with UK cultural organisations, and bring artists and culture from their country to the UK to take part in exhibitions, festivals and residencies.

This Europe day, the 31 cultural institutes of EUNIC London celebrate three projects for which they have joined their forces within the European Writers 2019 project.

The European Writers 2019 has commitment from 20 different cultural institutes, each contributing to fund travel to the UK for two recently translated writers to take part in UK festivals wishing to develop their international programming. The call is currently open for further festivals or programmers wishing to work with participating cultural institutes on the European Writers 2019 project. Current partners for the European Writers 2019 project are the British Library, the National Centre for Writing and the Institut français, are announcing three major European writer events for May and June:

  • European Literature Night, 14 May 2019 at the British Library, with Latvian poet and visual artist Valts Ernstreits, Czech poet Olga Stehlikovaand her musical collaborator Tomas Braun, Estonian poet Doris Kareva, who has been nominated several times for the Nobel Prize for Literature, and a performance from French/British indie rock band François and the Atlas Mountains of their latest album, Fleurs du Mal, inspired by Charles Baudelaire’s famous 1857 collection.
  • European Dreams and Stories, 15 May 2019 at the Institut français, a salon-style event with British writer Jonathan Coe talking about his new novel Middle England, set in the aftermath of the British referendum, French writer Olivia Rosenthal and her translator Sophie Lewis reading from To Leave with the Reindeera nd questioning our modern ways of life, and Italian writer and FILL festival co-founder Claudia Durastanti discussing the place of European fiction in our reading landscapes, chaired by Music & Literature editor and former Booker International Prize judge Daniel Medin.
  • Stories from Europe, 4 June 2019 at Norwich Centre for Writing, who will welcome four novelists to Dragon Hall to share their stories and experiences: Javier Cercas (Spain), Christina Hesselholdt (Denmark), Pajtim Statovci(Finland) & Lina Wolff (Sweden), chaired by Lucie Campos.

EUNIC London is collaborating with the British Arts Festival Association (BAFA)to hold a networking event “Staying Connected: Fostering International Relations” at the Goethe Institut on 18 June 2019 to facilitate and encourage contacts between cultural institutes and interested festivals working in the arts, music and literature. EUNIC London is also working closely with Creative Scotland to hold a similar event at the Glasgow Centre for Contemporary Art on 1 and 2 July 2019, and with Arts Council England to build further resources for programming partnerships with European countries.

Responding to the chances faced by Europe today, EUNIC London is also announcing the launch of our signature campaign #SharedEurope with a short film entitled “What Europe means to me”, where he have asked fellow British and European citizens to share their views on Europe. This campaign is all about showing the uniqueness of every country in Europe, while also showing what we share in values, culture, and art.

This year’s EUNIC presidency is made up of the French Institute in the UK, the Finnish Institute, and Romanian Cultural Institute. “The presidency team is as diverse as the cultural institutes and representations that make up the EUNIC London group”, says Magda Stroe, representative of the Romania which is also President of the EU Council until July. “Our focus on shared European cultural values sends out an important message to all audiences interested in arts and culture”, continues Lucie Campos representative of The French Institute. “The presence of European culture in the UK will continue to grow through EUNIC London’s work and activities“, adds Jaakko Nousiainen for the Finnish Institute.