Culture makes you and you make culture (Cultuur maak(t) je) was a program of workshops and exercises developed for the cultural organisation De Domijnen. This organisation is responsible for most of the cultural activities in the municipality of Sittard / Geleen, including the public library, the theatre, the museums, the film house, the music school etc. Together with artist Jeanne van Heeswijk I was asked to perform as cultural intendant for one year and to create a new program that would connect the diverse domains of De Domijnen and the citizens.
We decided to start with interviewing all employees (over 100) and asked them ‘What makes you’ and ‘What do you make?’. It gave us an overview of the diverse making cultures in the region. The next step was to organise workshops in which we would partner the employees and have them design a new cultural service out of the combination of their different expertises (often not their professional expertise). In this way unexpected connections were made. In what way could the fanfare be connected to the tennis association? Or enthusiast hikers and crochet makers, home cooks and home health care people, singers and storytellers etc.
We invited artists Arne Hendriks, Shane Waltener, Sjim Hendriks, design studio Raw Color, composer Diederik Rijpstra en opera director Miranda Lakerveld to further develop six of these combinations in to workshops and proposals for citizens to participate in.
The results and insights of the program are collected in the book Cultuur maak(t) je. Niet Zomaar!.