The european culture to our doors

Photo: Pedro Ruiz The Duty
The director of the Goethe-Institute Montreal, Katja Melzer (left)

EUNIC, the cultural network of the european Union, will now be an official branch in Montreal. And it was the director of the Goethe-Institute Montreal, Katja Melzer, who is the president. This antenna will formalize the activities undertaken so far by the different european communities of Montreal. They had, for example, launched in 2005, the site Read Europe, this gathering place of the various literatures which animate the european countries.


The grouping EUNIC, European Union National Institutes for Culture, was created in Brussels in 2006 to enable its partners in various countries to develop partnerships and work together. Ultimately, these partners wish to become, by 2025, essential for the dissemination, research and training of the european cultural diplomacy. The network currently represents the 28 member States of the european Union, and brings together 36 cultural institutions and branches of cultural diplomacy. He oversees also a hundred groupings of organizations across the world, that offer transnational projects. After the european Union political and economic, so here is the european Union cultural.


In Montreal, the collection now includes the Istituto Italiano di Cultura, the cultural forum of austria, the consulate general of France in Québec and the Goethe-Institut. It is open to the idea of receiving other partners, and is eager to collaborate with academia.


More concretely, it is to pool its resources, ” says Katja Melzer.


On the German side, the Goethe-Institut is particularly interested in the development of its digital archive. The collection digital of the German national Library, for example, deserves to be better known, is Marie-Pierre Poulin, director of information and library of the Goethe-Institut. On the Italian side, it is also believed to enhance the digital archives. “This could be done in architecture, for example, with the archives of the ancient architecture and modern architecture,” says Ms. Melzer.


Read the Europe


It is in 2005, when Montreal was named the world capital of literature by UNESCO, the european cultural institutions have launched Read Europe. Read Europe now has a reading circle and offers events and meetings with authors in the bookstores. In October, two books have been shared : One person and one hundred thousand, the Italian author Luigi Pirandello, and Cox, or the race of time, the Austrian Christoph Ransmayr. The books are generally available in a French version and in English version.


Meetings are also held informally by the cultural institutions to celebrate the Eurovision, the song contest organized among the countries of Europe. But EUNIC now wants to cast the net wider, and to organize events and exchanges in all areas of culture. The presence of antennas of EUNIC in Toronto and Ottawa could allow, for example, to invite artists or teachers on tour.


In 2009, a group EUNIC in Canada has already seen the light of day, but the headquarters of EUNIC in Brussels, decided in 2015 to work with local groups rather than national.


By participating in EUNIC global, the european cultural institutions in Quebec will follow a more thematic set out at the head office of Brussels. “In 2018, the theme will revolve around cultural heritage,” says dr. Melzer. We should also talk about urban spaces, culture of participation to global warming. “These are really big topics. With EUNIC, this is the same approach, ” says dr. Melzer.

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