The Open Up project (Acronym: OU) explores how, in this era of division and partition, of segregation and exclusion, culture could play an active role in allowing new forms of community relations to emerge. Through its various activities, OU aims at providing a strong, active and sustainable platform for creative synergies. The project aspires to build sustainable art practices amongst underprivileged communities in each participant city. OU consists of a transnational network in the fields of art, culture, performing arts, urban and social issues.
OU is a project that aims to unearth artists, performers, designers and crafts people-with a special focus on young people-from neglected, segregated and underprivileged communities in urban environments in seven European countries: Cyprus, France, Greece, Sweden, Finland, Portugal and Spain. To achieve this, OU will create seven different satellite platforms as knots of a common thread, to empower these creators to develop their skills, present their works and create a new business model framework, which will enable them to sustain their work after the end of the OU project. In addition, an eighth mobile platform will be created that will travel to the other seven countries, to creatively explore and share the OU experiences.
During the first three years of the programme, and through the eight OU platforms, an extensive series of diverse activities will be organised, which will culminate in the OU Cultural Festivals, taking place in the fourth year. OU will employ the Learn-Make-Present model, an iterative process, which will culminate in the presentation of new work, aiming at developing and testing sustainable business models in the arts and crafts sector, also promoting intercultural dialogue and intercultural competence. The "Learn" process involves exchange and dissemination of skills and knowledge, the "Make" process allows the participants to realise their creative concepts in practice, using their acquired knowledge and the "Present" process promotes the creative results and products of the participants to the public and the creative industry.