THE PUZZLE THAT CONNECTS TWO CAPITALS
Each mural is a puzzle, a part of a large puzzle – which will be presented at the end of 2020 at an exhibition. Each mural and each city has its own story. This is the story of Thessaloniki.
The majestic city of Thessaloniki, one of several most important, largest and most beautiful cities of our peninsula. Unique for its originality, architecture and spirit, a mix of antique, Ancient Greek and modern. Thessaloniki is the second largest city in Greece. And, what is even most important for this story, Thessaloniki is European Youth Capital for 2014. Also, Thessaloniki is one of the cities that supported us the most during the candidacy for European Youth Capital 2019.
Therefore, it does not come as a surprise that Thessaloniki is one of the cities which has opened its door to us within the OPENS on the Road: Street Art Opens Its Door project.
“We have come upon the invitation of The City of Thessaloniki and Third Gymnasium. We were welcomed by the principle, English language teacher and several pupils, but also European Youth Capital 2014. Thessaloniki. Apart from painting walls, we had activations by the camper and with young people, around the school and at several locations in and around Thessaloniki. The team from Thessaloniki showed us the city, along with young people from Thessaloniki, where we had the chance to see all important points and everything that The City of Thessaloniki had built and made during the year of the capital. We saw what they had left in legacy of their year, and we also had the chance to meet with some representatives of organisations which implemented their programs, during the year of their capital”, Valentina Antić, OPENS2019 International Cooperation Coordinator says.
The Greek media reports that graffiti at the famous mathematics gymnasium have been painted over and that there is a mural connecting the two Youth Capitals now. Valentina adds that, while we were painting, there was a group of guys from France who also dealt with murals and painting of murals, who asked if they could join. Since that the principle was with us, he approved that for other walls too, so apart from our mural, three more works were done.
While mural remains, the team of around ten people, primarily OPENS volunteers, goes on. Kruševac and Novi Pazar are next, and the colours are already ready for the puzzle in Podgorica, too. During the painting of the last mural, in the beginning of September in Novi Sad, there will be guests, partners and artists from the entire region, and the purpose of the project is to promote peace and friendship among young people in the region, but also to encourage young people in the region to take active participation in their communities, as well as their innovation and creativity. Therefore, there are young people from Novi Sad on the road. Young people, who, along with young people from other cities of the region talk, exchange experiences, connect mutually, but also the region. This is just one of the manners in which OPENS wants to encourage young people to actively participate in the ordering of their local community by adjusting the city to the taste and needs of young people.