Reloading Images Damascus


Introduction Reloading Images Damascus


RELOADING IMAGES Damascus is an interdisciplinary artistic research platform. It invites artists and scholars from Syria and abroad to discuss and explore ways of artistic practice and collaboration, based on an interactive exchange of experiences, ideas, know-how and tools of production and self-organisation.
RELOADING IMAGES Damascus explores and questions the role, potentials and results of artistic production and approaches as a vocabulary that goes beyond the general mediatisation of global divisions and polarisations. As an international artistic joint venture it provides an open platform and network for an interdisciplinary dialogue and future collaborations to emerge
It is a 10-month project: from March 2008 onwards, the participants work collectively on form and content of the project. In October 2008 they come together for a 3 week workshop in Damascus. In December 2008 the results of the project are published in printed form.

The platform


RELOADING IMAGES Damascus does not have one single theme. Instead it aims to reflect on the complexity of the circumstances and interrelations in which the project is located in: the cultural, social and economical aspects – and the location of the individual – within these structures. The following questions are a starting point:


Reloading Images Damascus
Art and social relevance: under which circumstances is art an option? In what forms can art initiate and participate in social discourses?

Image and representation: how can concepts of visual culture be rethought - through images?

Urban space as a subconscious system: how do daily life, historical layers, traditions of the narrative and social affiliations interact and create a sense of cultural identity?

Beyond exoticism and xenophobia: in what ways do systems of categorisations lead to polarizations like east/west, inclusion/exclusion, centre/periphery? Where are the points of transition?


Starting in March 2008 the Syrian participants meet and exchange ideas, personal interests, experiences and interpretations evolving from these questions. Through an online community website they engage in a continuous discourse with the participants from abroad.

The place : Damascus



Damascus is a vivid city full of diversity, regarding its inhabitants’ different lifestyles, living realities and backgrounds. Its history goes back to as early as 8000 to 10,000 BC. Today Damascus is home to a small but vibrant scene of artists and creative thinkers.
  Reloading Images Damascus
Although the city is changing and modernising at a vast speed, there are still only few possibilities for young artists to further develop and experiment with ideas and approaches to artistic production. The interaction between Syrian and foreign artists and cultural scholars with the local community and the exploration of public space are the starting point for the artistic discourse within the settings of the city. The programme of Damascus Cultural Capital of the Arab World 2008 provides an additional enriching context.




a dynamic platform for young artists based on work-in-progress
a framework for exchange, research, questioning and development of tools and know-how for art production, initiatives and networks
open to diverse views and interpretations
open to all kinds of disciplines of art and theory, including urbanism, architecture, cinema, theatre, performing arts, installation arts, visual art, writing, cultural studies…




a grant programme or residency for individual art projects
a sole training or learning programme
an exhibition project
an absolute definition of how art production should be
focussing on a single art discipline




Reloading Images Damascus


RELOADING IMAGES Damascus invites 10 Syrian and 10 foreign artists and cultural scholars with a strong interest in collaborative projects and artistic research. Every participant should have good English skills and should be familiar with collaborating and communicating over the internet. RELOADING IMAGES covers all expenses, including travel and accommodation during the workshop, but there is a participation fee: Syria: 1500SYP, EU/US/Canada/Japan/S.Korea/ Australia: 170€, all others 100€.


To apply, visit (, and mail it to by 7th of February 2008. The application is a guarantee of commitment by the applicant to be engaged throughout the whole project from March until December 2008. Participants will be informed about the selection result by end of February 2008.


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