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Research Trip

Estelle Borel and Tania Simili: Research Trip in Beirut

The desire to travel differently, to share their art with different audiences and to exchange with artists in countries with a different context from their own -on current societal themes- is at the heart of this project.

Through the reflections brought by their last contemporary circus creation Gnoko Bok on the theme of anti-black people racism, plural identity and living well together, the need to share other experiences and to dig deeper into the subject with other artists became obvious for Tania Simili and Estelle Borel. Lebanon, a mosaic country, designated by Pope John Paul II in 1989 as a country message of freedom, is an example of pluralism for the East as for the West and has a lot to share regarding those topics.

Estelle, a circus artist (tightwire dancer), has been working for several years with Amnesty International and went as an ambassador for the I Welcome Refugees campaign and as a volunteer to Lesvos in a refugee camp for a few months. Knowing that Lebanon hosts many refugees and that the Lebanese artistic community creates spaces for them to express themselves, exchanging together would be very enriching.

Tania, also a circus artist (aerial acrobat), spent time in Lebanon in 2019 for her thesis in Performing Arts and met the artistic community of the Beirut area. This experience reinforced the desire for a Swiss-Lebanese collaboration.

They will spend time at Hammana Artist House with five other lebanese artists for a research residency based on Carolin Emecke’s quote : “I’m looking for what poetic force, what literary bias can effectively resist violence”. Together they will exchange on their committed performances and participate in diverse workshops and finally create a little form to present at the end. Tania and Estelle will also spend a week in the Cirquenciel social circus school in Beirut.

Upcoming maintenance work

The application portal myprohelvetia will be updated from 1.1.-7.1.2024. Due to these changes, open applications must be finalized and submitted via the current online portal (myprohelvetia.ch) by the latest 23:59 on 31 December 2023. Until this date, the deadlines and criteria outlined in the current guidelines and calls for applications apply. New applications can be created and submitted in the application portal as of 8 January 2024.