AfrOeste is an exchange, learning and promotion network for the contemporary creative arts of the Afro-descendant people of Latin America that builds a bridge between both sides of the Atlantic.
There are more than 130 million Afro-descendant people in Latin America. This community is one of the largest and most diverse in the continent and has been been the victim of structural discrimination and segregation for centuries. Today, they still often face economic and social exclusion, and a lack of visibility even in the digital world. This is why the objectives of the project are to promote the richness and diversity of cultural expressions of Afro-descendant people in Latin America, to boost the artistic production and exchange between creators, promote contemporary artistic creations, and in the long term, the development of a permanent institutional network centered around Afro-descendant people.
The platform mixes practice and the re-value of contemporary cultural expressions of Afro-descendent people in Latin America with the networks of international cooperation in existence in European cultural institutions. A work alliance based on the equality between creators and institutions, with a bottom-up approach, and a willingness to bring to the public the artistic expressions of Afro-descendants.
Protecting Afro-descendant culture in Latin America
To achieve the stated objectives and in order to consolidate the network as an innovative form of communication between local and international cultural agents, the activities include:
- a residency exchange programme for managers and artistis from the Afro-descendant institutions;
- cultural activities within the project's framework through an internal call;
- multilateral cultural events through a process of joint collaboration;
- an online training programme on digital tools for cultural promotion and networking.
During the second step of the process, the project partners developed internal activities to reflect on the content and on how to boost the network such as a networking app for the partnership and an analysis of the situation of Afro-descendant people in Latin America. At the same time, the partners also developed external pilot activities with virtual events to promote Afro-descendant cultures and training sessions on digital tools for cultural promotion and networking.
Working together with AfrOeste has been a wonderful experience, in the past few months we’ve had the opportunity to know incredible women who work insatiably to make their stories shine. The reach of AfrOeste goes beyond an exchange and promotion network for the creative arts, it’s a learning network and connection between organizations, which allows us to establish alliances and connections that create synergies for change.Amanda Arroyo, Fabrica de Historias, Costa Rica