AKTES (Pocket Academy for Arts) is a socio-cultural project designed for small insular areas in order to support the participation of children in community life and development.
In 2023 AKTES travelled to Tilos island, Aegean sea and the strategic area of development was "The history of the Island".
Each year AKTES project travels to a different island during the winter months (November - May) and works with local communities to support sustainable & communal cultural development models.
AKTES supports small Municipalities with innovative participatory tools of sustainable cultural development, supports artists to travel and get in touch with small communities of the Aegean and most importantly AKTES aims to strengthen the participation of children in the life of their community (active citizenship).
AKTES use artistic experimentation as a tool to involve teenagers in a co-creation process of activities within a theme of strategic importance for the island (for example tourism, culture, environment, etc.).
2023 Artistic Residencies:
The first artistic residency of Lito Skopeliti engaged children, ages 11-18, to develop a cultural and historic route, both as a walk within Livadia village but also as a wall chronology for their school.
Lito's workshop wished to narrate different aspects of the island's history in a cultural route, with the aim of highlighting the complex Telian identity. Guided by the questions "What is history? Which stories do we choose to tell? Why?", the children from the local hight school became researchers and narrators of the history of their island, researching various dimensions of social, political and cultural life from ancient times to the present day .
In this cultural route, they interwined, elements related to both the geological and historical dimensions of the land, narration of myths and anecdotes and historical events.
During the workshop, the students, using tools such as (auto)ethnography, observation and historical research, create a chronology that presented to their community.
The second artistic residency of Margarita Athanasiou was a co-creating process to develop an map-collage funzine.
Margarita along side the children who participated in the second residency questioned "How is the story depicted? How can we visually present the multiplicity of our historical narratives?"
The purpose of this second workshop was to create a map-collage of personal and collective history. The collage technique allowed us to separate the image from its context and be able to fit it into a new context.
Using this tool, we brought together the history and geography of the island with personal experiences of its inhabitants and their vision for the future. Tilos students collected archival historical material and created a personal historical records using photography, freehand drawing and text.
The ultimate goal was to create an imaginary map of Tilos that, contrary to conventional maps, did not depict objective reality, but a potential space-time, where what has happened, is happening simultaneously with what has not yet happened.
One of our main conclusion, as a group, was that the history of a place, and specifically of Tilos, evolves on many levels. Historical events are written mainly in books, however, history consists of both horizontal and vertical moments!
When: 17-28 March & 22 April - 8 May 2023
AKTES is under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and is implemented in collaboration with the Municipality of Tilos and with the support of Blue Star Ferries
Photo credits: COMM'ON, Olga Kallergi, Nefeli Papaioannou
Video credits: Nefeli Papaioannou