Grundtvig Learning Partnership, 2011-2013
Space Today UK Ltd.
UK, Austria, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Poland, Spain
The Empathy project aimed at supporting social inclusion of people who, because of old age, lack of material resources or living in rural areas have limited access to culture. In particular, the project was addressed to those living outside large cultural centres and have only basic education or little experience of travelling abroad.
- to explore how engaging in arts based activities supports personal development and social inclusion
- to identify at least two early modern paintings to form the foundation for local group art activities
- to encourage learners to develop a personal art journal to record their emotional engagement with their learning
- to exchange extracts of journals between learners using a series of newsletters translated into partner languages
- to organize transnational workshops with staff and learners creating a group mural in each partner country
- to inspire participants through cultural visits to art centres in each partner country
Paintings by local artists became the basis for art workshops, during which we paid special attention to sensitising our listeners to the concept of “empathy” by encouraging them to write personal diaries, in which they described their feelings related to the experience of art and experience of own artistic work and travel abroad, in the form of free notes containing reflections and comments, and even poetic impressions. Fragments of learners’ diaries were then placed in newsletters and exchanged between countries during international meetings, to be inspirations for other participants. During the seven international meetings trainers and learners got acquainted with the culture of other European countries, shared their experiences and painted together a mural – one in each country. Some of the events were filmed which can be seen as a summary of the project.