Story Time, an international project created with the support of the Creative Europe programme, connected five European organisations: Izvori, d. o. o., a publishing house from Zagreb, Inter-kulturo, d. o. o., an organisation from Maribor, Österreichische Gesellschaft für Kinderphilosophie, a society from Graz, Studio Gaus GmbH, a company from Berlin, and the Koroška galerija likovnih umetnosti.
The main aims of the project were: to provide access to and the knowledge of the culture of refugees in their host environments and societies, especially through the stories for children and youth from the countries the refugees come from; to help refugee children access European culture; to foster the integration of refugees and help people overcome their fear of foreigners through the participation of children and adults in joint workshops and other events; to create new artworks that will result from a dialogue between artists from various cultures, represent new interpretations of traditional motifs and question our values in light of the migrant crisis.
In the framework of the project, some of the most well-known stories and picture books for children were translated into Arabic from the languages of the partner organisations. At the same time, Harun and Jasmine, an Arabic picture book by Nadina Kaadan, was crated and translated into the languages of the partner countries. In parallel with the translation of the stories, the partner organisations conducted various activities, readings and workshops for all generations. In the framework of the project, the Koroška Gallery of Fine Arts conceived art residencies, whose result was the exhibition Story Time, which later travelled to the partner cities.
The topic of the exhibition was related to the project’s content and its starting points, which foregrounded the significance of knowing the cultural history of different nations and environments, since it is precisely knowledge that is the first common point on the path to understanding other cultures that are coming to Europe with the migration currents and to feeling solidarity with people. The invited artists reinterpreted and thematised the cultural history and the cultural contexts of both the European and the Arabic world. They pointed out questions related to postulates such as humanity, peace, war and good and bad, at the same time questioning the role of an individual and thereby also their responsibility for their fellow human beings.