“Riga 2014” programme: contribute to development of cultural environment!

“Riga 2014” programme: contribute to development of cultural environment!
Kaspars Garda, Rīga 2014
14-02-2014 Latviski A+ A-
As we all well know, culture means not only splendid opera houses, galleries, concert halls and museums. Just as well, culture encompasses keeping a clean doorstep, tidy backyard and feeling rejoiced at what you have created, grown or made yourself. Join in and create the cultural environment around you, here and now! The following is a list of “Riga 2014” events which the people of Riga, kids and adults alike, can take part in and create themselves.

Tidying-up and installing infrastructure upgrades in Riga’s neighbourhoods during the Nationwide Clean-up Campaign
Throughout various yards in Riga’s neighbourhoods, on the 27th of April

Several yards and public spaces around apartment buildings in Riga’s neighbourhoods were tidied up and had new infrastructure built in co-operation with young designers and architects during the “Lielā talka” Nationwide Clean-up Campaign over the past several years. In the autumn of 2013, four courtyards were again chosen where the locals, collaborating with architects and designers, will be busy cleaning the area, planting new plants and trees, painting, setting up new municipal infrastructure and doing other work during the campaign. The main precondition for the project was the residents’ own initiative and active involvement.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”

“Riga’s Self | Portraits” creative workshops
Held in Riga’s suburbs on a monthly basis; follow the updates on our portal!

Perplexing, exciting, amusing and fun – these are roughly the feelings one is likely to go through when creating a self-portrait. And that is exactly what the travelling workshop “Riga’s Self-Portraits offers the people to do – create their own self-portraits under the supervision of professional photographers, employing various photographic techniques. The workshop is held in various neighbourhoods throughout Riga on a monthly basis. So far, the workshop has been to Bolderāja, Jugla, Purvciems and other neighbourhoods of Riga. The main medium of a self-portrait is a photograph, which can be combined with other methods – autobiographical writing, drawing, performances, comic strips, etc.

Thematic division “Road Map”


Design project “The Long Walk”
The project takes place in an apartment for rent in Riga’s Quiet Centre and five other Riga neighbourhoods from April through to October.

“The Long Walk” (Garā pastaiga) is a project demonstrating the role of design in three human age spans – childhood, maturity and old age – and showing how the environment a person lives in can change the quality of his or her life. The project is divided into three parts. “Old Age” (from the 2nd to the 30th of April) takes place in an apartment for rent in Riga’s Quiet Centre, which will be revamped to suit a senior citizen. Here visitors will be given the opportunity to participate in several social activities as well as to get a feeling of what it is like to be old. The “Gym” (from the 1st to the 31st of May) is an environment development project during which five new public outdoor gyms will be built in Riga’s neighbourhoods. Finally, “Kidsroomzoom” (from the 1st to the 31st of October) is a design project meant to turn the spotlight on the design of toys and furniture for kids, so they can contribute to the intellectual and physical development of children.

Thematic division “Road Map”

Project “En Rooters”
The 21st to the 27th of April, venue to be announced (the dates are subject to change due to weather conditions)

The project “En Rooters” (Iesakņotāji) is all about making new friends and sharing experiences. It involves junior school pupils meeting senior citizens who live in nursing homes. The participants are selected based on their interest in, and wish to learn more about, anything that is related to gardening. They jointly sow and plant various plants, flowers and vegetables that will be growing near nursing homes and elsewhere in the city. The “En Rooters” pilot experiment took place last year. It involved ten children and residents of the “Ezerkrasti” nursing home. This year the project will visit several Riga neighbourhoods, bringing together children and senior citizens to become good friends and rise to new challenges in gardening, together. As part of the project, the exhibition “The Present” features intergenerational solidarity, being a senior in Riga, and active ageing: seniors speak, seniors do! A number of other events will also take place – discussions, concerts, workshops and much more.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”


“Friend in a Pot or Potato Diaries”
Applications for growing your own potato accepted until the 3rd of March

“Friend in a Pot or Potato Diaries” is one of the projects in the “Riga 2014” programme that is targeted at junior school pupils, but not just them – entire families or simply good friends may take part in growing their special potatoes by submitting an application via www.kartupelis.lv and receiving their individual potato meant to be grown in a flowerpot. During the harvest, all potatoes will be weighed and measured, and the most successful potato growers will be presented with valuable prizes. The other part of the project is the creation of a new musical performance for children, the “Potato Opera. It is about the adventures of a small potato boy, the origins of potatoes, etc.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”

Popular photo festival “Urban Viewfinders”
May, 2014. Venue to be announced

Preparations for the massive photo festival “Urban Viewfinders” continued throughout 2013, when a certain theme was announced every month and people were urged to find unusual vantage points and views in Riga. An unlimited number of professionals and amateurs may participate in the competition – anyone who likes to snap pictures is welcome. In the end, the best and most striking photographs will be selected for an exhibition that will be held during “Riga Photo Month”, scheduled for this May.

Thematic division “Road Map”

Collective planting of seeds for the “Garden of Freedom”
Brīvības iela 90, from the 17th of May to the 6th of September

The “Garden of Freedom” is a collective campaign of planting various plants. It will also feature a seminar about the creation of urban gardens on a windowsill, balcony or terrace. Participants in the seminar will be informed about the experience and tradition of creating urban gardens, offered practical advice regarding the planting and nursing of plants by professional gardeners, and receive handbooks about the growing of plants on windowsills, balconies and terraces. The handbook is based on several studies about gardening traditions in Riga, the authors include backyard gardeners as well as people who have created impressive gardens at home, on windowsills and balconies.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”

Flower Blanket
The Vidzeme Market and the courtyard of the building at Brīvības iela 90, on the 31st of May and the 1st of June

“Flower Blanket” is an interactive ecologically-inclined project, offering the public a chance to follow, and take part in, a captivating and creative process of weaving. French artist Joanes Simon-Perret weaves seed ribbons into traditional rag blankets that eventually grow into flower blankets. When watered regularly, textile fibre becomes a soil of sorts, where the seeds start to germinate and sprout shoots. Once made, the blankets will be displayed at the Vidzeme Market for the public to see.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”

“Courtyard Renaissance”
Apartment building courtyards in Riga’s neighbourhoods; the project continues all year round

“Courtyard Renaissance” is a project for residents living in apartment buildings in Riga’s neighbourhoods. The objective is to expand the concept of culture as perceived by the people. The project envisages joint creative effort by residents and landscape designers to improve the appearance and functionality of courtyards. Responding to residents’ suggestions, experienced landscape designers develop a plan of upgrades for the given courtyard – a future vision to be attained at a gradual pace. For more information about applying for participation in the project, read this.

Thematic division “Survival Kit”


Game of ideas “Development Campaign for Good Locations”
Time and venue to be announced

The creative workshop “Development Campaign for Good Locations” is an event that runs much like a game where the participants generate ideas for transforming and improving a certain public area in a Riga neighbourhood. The pilot experiment was organised already in 2013 in Sarkandaugava, where local residents collaborated with experts to create a concept for the development of Alekša skvērs. This year, when Riga is the European Capital of Culture, the project will be rerun in the Čiekurkalns and Ziepniekkalns neighbourhoods.

Thematic division “Road Map”


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