07 - 12 May

Independent European Scenes Under Pressure

talk held in English
5 Rue de l'Épée, 69003 Lyon
Thursday 09 May
14:30 - 16:00

Scènes indépendantes européennes sous pression : la guerre culturelle a commencé

In partnership with the Reset! network

With Antoine Pecqueur, Lili Pankotai, Ľudovít Nápoký et Manon Moulin

In Slovakia, the new Minister of Culture Martina Šimkovičová recently announced the cessation of funding to cultural organisations offering spaces for expression to queer cultures, such as the Kunsthalle in Bratislava. A member of the Slovak People's Party that came to power in October 2023, the Minister embodies the drifts of the government of Robert Fico, openly homophobic and pro-Russian. In Italy, the national-conservative right-wing government is also investing in the cultural sphere, with its Minister of Culture Gennaro Sangiuliano calling for the development of a 'new Italian imaginary.' Also in the crosshairs of Giorgia Meloni: public broadcasting, which she seeks to control entirely in the cultural war she has initiated since her election. In Hungary, Viktor Orbán's illiberal drifts against the cultural landscape are more extensively documented, including the gradual extinction of independent media, repeated attacks against minorities, or the glorification of a national cultural narrative—Hungary being the European Union country proportionally allocating the highest percentage of its GDP to culture, as highlighted by the French author Antoine Pecqueur. Faced with these declarations of war against independent cultural scenes, how can resistance be expressed? In Budapest, actors from the artistic sector or young activists like Lili Pankotai lead the charge and raise awareness about the abuses of power in place. In Slovakia, networks of independent venues such as Anténa sound the alarm. The European network Reset! also aligns with this momentum and intends to offer a platform in support of these alternatives. How can one stand firm in this declared cultural war by an increasing number of regimes across Europe?