Bautopia2 – a warm welcome in Porto!

newsculture and creativity conference

BauTopia3 happened in Timisoara with an incredible community!

Our Rural Hubs Researchers’ POV: reflections on BauTopia2


We kicked off in the best way possible: a smaller group from the CreativeFLIP project hosted a new Learning Labs session and in the afternoon the TWIN Hubs Ceremony happened: the beginning of a one year long collaboration between 50 matched hubs that will learn and grow together in a peer-to-peer exchange.

In the afternoon, we had the official start for all our participants in the Culture and Creativity Conference, hosted in the incredible venue of UPTEC in Porto Downtown.

To inspire us for the next few days, we had the testimony of Miguel Herrara and Ana Ramos from Genalguacil Pueblo – Museo, where we could see the transformation of a rural village into a vibrant art space! Later, Alastair Fuad-Luke positively teased all the audience by asking provocative questions from his Imaginaries of Positive Disruption.

Day 2

We had the pleasure to count with the Welcome Words from Dr. Jana Binder Goethe-Institut Lisbon, Barbara Stacher European Commission, Eng. Filipe Araújo from Porto Municipality, Ricardo Rego from Viana do Castelo Municipality and also Cristina Farinha who helped craft and supported ECHN from the very beginning, 8 years ago!

We also launched the new features from Creatives Unite, the ‘So You Need Money?’ and ‘My Intellectual Property’ Tool, right before the inspiring keynotes ‘What does a Cities course do in an Arts school?’ by Diana Ibanez Lopez & Fani Kostourou from the University of the Arts London and Central Saint Martins

This was followed by a Panel Discussion addressing Knowledge exchange – Peer 2 Peer programs (with Davide Amato from ECHN), the Learning Labs (with Wanda Poitschke from the Creative FLIP/Goethe-Institut) and Urgent CCS skill gaps by Florian Schneider, NTNU.

The afternoon started with a Panel Discussion on the topic ‘Glocalization in Culture and Creativity’ moderated by Vassilis Charalampidis from ECHN and with the valuable contribution of Sylvia Amann from Inforelais & Creative FLIP (Changing rural perspectives for and with culture), Adam Jagiełło-Rusiłowski from The Future DiverCities Project (Urban Transformation through creative & co-creation practices) and the researchers Colm Stockdale, Lorenzo Marmo from the Coral Project (talking about The impact of collaborative workspaces in rural & peripheral areas).

We also heard the inspiring case of A New kind of blue project before the Parallel Sessions and the Tour of the Local Creative District Bombarda, with guided tours to the coworks of CRU Creative Hub, Land and Circus Network!

The cherry on top of a full day? A jam session from the ‘Creative Hubbies’ in the beautiful backyard of Sérgio Rebelo Studio.

Day 3

The last day of Bautopia2 started with ECHN’s General Assembly, where the members had the opportunity to listen to the report of the last 3 years and upcoming projects and the voting for new Board of Directors happened.

The new elected BoD has now Alejandro Papadopoulos (PAU – We Are PAU, Spain), Ivan Lopez Garrido (Republikken, Denmark), Tânia Santos (CRU Creative Hub, Portugal) Tessa Moroder (Lottozero, Italy) and Vassilis Charalampidis (Bios / Romantso, Greece), with two alternate members: Esra Gönen (ORIGINN, Turkey), and Genoveva Christova-Murray (Missia 23, Bulgaria).

The closing of these intense 3 days happened in the best way possible with the excursion to Viana do Castelo where we were welcomed in the beautiful Theater Sá de Miranda by Ricardo Rego from Viana do Castelo Municipality and the last learning moment was focused on the Rural Hubs with a presentation of Dinamo10’s projects VIANA ABORDO and RURAL HUB MONTARIA and a round table moderated by Fátima São Simão on ‘The Local, Regional and Cross Border Ecosystem’ with the inspiring testimonies of Agustin Jamardo (Anceu Coliving), Africa Rodriguez (Espacio Arroelo), Edo Sadikovic (Sende Coliving), Andy Arias (WOW Cowork) and Helder Teixeira (Dinamo10).

The farewell moment happened in the sunny backyard of Dinamo10 in the centre of Viana do Castelo, with live music and a toast to some incredible 3 days of learning, networking and celebration! Thank you all who were part of this journey.

Organized by the European Creative Hubs Network, Goethe-Institut Brüsse and Creative FLIP

Co-Funded by the European Commission

Co-promoted by Câmara Municipal do Porto and Câmara Municipal de Viana do Castelo

A shout out to the incredible support from the local teams in Cru Creative Hub, Dinamo10, UPTEC and Porto Innovation Hubs which, in collaboration with ECHN, Goethe Institut Brussels and the Creative FLIP team, have made this event possible!

You can find all the pictures of the event and soon the streamed sessions on the BauTopia2 website.

Photo: Matilde Cunha