Promoting territorial cohesion, the decentralization of the contemporary cultural offer, correcting its access imbalance through a program inspired by the cultural, natural and human capital of Alentejo, this is Futurama – Baixo Alentejo’s Cultural and Artistic Ecosystem .

Started in May 2021, John Romão’s new project proposes a synergy between the municipalities of Beja, Castro Verde, Mértola and Serpa, creating an innovative cultural, artistic and collaborative ecosystem, collaborative and transdisciplinary. It does so by developing a regular anual program, rooted in the territory and its local communities, focused on experimentation and in the combination between contemporary and traditional arts, biodiversity, heritage and transdisciplinarity.

Seeking to create new spaces for interaction and inclusiveness, fostering citizenship and equality, Futurama proposes an inter-generational crossing, including communities with different ages and knowledge.

Futurama – Cultural and Artistic Ecosystem of Baixo Alentejo consists of 4 main activities:

  1. ARTISTIC RESIDENCIES | NEW CREATIONS AND INVESTIGATIONS

Four associated programmers in 2021 (Filipa Oliveira, Luís Fernandes, Joana Gusmão & Nuno Lisboa and Rui Horta) will invite ten Portuguese artists to develop new works and investigation in the fields of visual arts, performing arts, music, sound art, cinema, and art digital, inspired by the symbolic, cultural, natural and human capital of Baixo Alentejo.

  1. CANTEXT

The project that fuses the words “Cante” and “Text” is born from the intersection between Cante Alentejano and contemporary literature.

Committed to safeguarding, and contemporary regeneration, of this UNESCO intangible cultural heritage, Futurama is inviting renowned Portuguese authors to write for eight choral groups in the Baixo Alentejo region: Gonçalo M. Tavares, Matilde Campilho, Tiago Rodrigues, Patrícia Portela or José Luís Peixoto.

  1. CONSTELLATIONS

Project Constellations’ guidelines are those of diversity, proximity and circulation within and between municipalities, promoting a dialogue between traditional cultural practices and contemporary artistic practices. It will be developed in three categories – Orality, Visuality and Physicality – and it takes place every month, in the last two Saturdays.

  1. EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM

The program unfolds in three activities, in line with the National Art Plan and in partnership with high-schools and colleges in the region: ongoing training and creation programs (“Geração Futurama”); monthly sessions with artists in high schools (“What is it about, the Contemporary?”); the celebration of artist Joseph Beuys 100-year anniversary, based on the transdisciplinary collaboration between Music and Textile students (“We are the Revolution”).

In the words of programmer and artistic director, John Romão, “the region of Baixo Alentejo bears significant traces of different peoples and cultures, reflecting the cultural diversity that exists today in the lives of its communities. Futurama will continue the intercultural and international dialogue that defines the history of the region”.

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