FIRST EUROPE aims to promote and celebrate Europe’s archaeological heritage, with a focus on the captivating site of Lepenski Vir in Serbia. A team of Máté Czakó, Pier Lorenzo Pisano and Ljubomir Nikolic has been working on the artistic concept of the project. Recently, they selected two artists (Alice Norma Lombardi and Patryk Matela) to join the residency. The artistic team and the project partners started working together between July 10 and 22. Mátyás Marofka, the coordinator of the residency, reports on the event.
‘Between July 10 and 22, 2023, the First Europe project held its first art residency in Serbia. The partner institutions of the international cooperation, Y Group (HU), Pro Progressione (HU), ECCOM (IT) and Lepenski Vir (SR) delegated three artists to lead the work process. Máté Czakó (HU) participated as a director, Pier Lorenzo Pisaro (IT) as a writer, and Ljubomir Nikolic (SR) as a composer. Among those who applied for the call before the event, two performers joined the first intensive, in-person work process of the project: the Italian opera singer Alice Norma Lombardi and the Polish beat-box artist Patryk Matela. The artistic group formed this way worked for 10 days on the structure of the ‘Opera Hackathon’, which serves as the basis for the subsequent creative processes.
The residency in July took place at the Archaeological Museum in Lepenski Vir, Serbia, which houses the 8,000-year-old remains of the first inhabited settlement in Europe. During the work, the creators delved into the possibilities for incorporating the unique cultural heritage into a form of musical performance art. The project also reflected on the special civilizational values found in Lepenski Vir as well as the impact of humanity on nature. Musical materials created using unique instruments (instruments of the Bélaműhely), contemporary and classical musical motifs were created during the work, which gave the form of expression for later productions. In addition to exploring the musical setting of the project, the dramatic concept that forms the basis of the artistic product was also created.
The newly created performing arts structure will be used in future art residencies in all three partner countries in 2024. On these occasions, the creative group will be expanded each time with local artists so that new but different musical performances based on the current materials can be realized for each residency over the course of 2 days.’