How can the Cameroonian cultural infrastructure be strengthened? How can the production of high quality art creation be reinforced? How can the local audience be more engaged in a dialogue with contemporary arts?
Arts and Culture is a highly underestimated social, political and economic sector in Cameroon. But it can play a more important role to enhance social coherence and to support a fair, democratic and respectful dialogue between communities. The local cultural sector depends strongly on international institutions and suffers from a lack of structural and national support.
The objective of this project is to address this need and facilitate the development of a more self-sustained cultural sector by using local knowledge and by establishing networks. In the long-term this could lead to the expansion of associated infrastructures that will function as competence hubs all over Cameroon, supporting other structures in the region beyond the pilot phase.
Creating a self-sustainable cultural system
The project, as a pilot, is unifying for the first time European and local stakeholders to develop a digital and physical platform in order to establish a strong network for artists, to tour art productions and to propose a capacity building programme for associated infrastructures. The network aims to support professionalization, structuring and networking of the cultural sector in Cameroon, through an empowerment system based on learning-by-doing, peer-to-peer consultancy and transfer of knowledge and in particular the exchange of artists between urban and rural areas of the country.
This project will start the machine!
This will be achieved through regular high quality cultural events, which are offering well needed alternative visions and impulses for the growing civil society in Cameroon. A special focus is given to the inclusive and decentral approach of the project, especially regarding possibilites to offer an equal exchange to cultural actors all over Cameroon from “rural” zones to “urban” zones and vice versa. Ten art productions are selected to tour in different cities and regions in Cameroon. The specially designed digital platform is fed with content (including a mapping and presentation of cultural infrastructures and an event calendar), in cooperation with the wider Cameroonian cultural sector. This platform is the main communication hub of the project.
After being shortlisted in July 2021, the project partners worked on their project proposal, carried out a mapping of cultural operators in six regions and sub regions of the country, and launched a call for proposals for service providers to design the digital platform that presents the activities of the network.
Cameroonian cultural tour
Early June 2022, the network's activities, the ten selected cultural spaces as well as the ten participating touring artists were presented. This was also the moment where the cultural spaces and the selected artists were matched and subsequently, worked together to plan touring dates. The launch event also included workshops on amongst other things event management, risk prevention and communication strategies; a programme that will continue throughout the tours.
The tours of the selected artists will take place until the end of October and cover dance, theatre, music, poetry, and visual arts, representing the different regions of Cameroon (including both francophone and anglophone artists).