The expedition had us thinking about our relationship with the environment, how to step out of human-centered narratives and how collective practices of care and protection play out in the wider Balkan region.
“In order for our actions, both civic and creative, to be trully collective and in the service of all life, we must work in solidarity with the natural world. In order to maintain balance and care and prevent mindless exploitation and the erasure of traditions and practices, the uses of natural resources must be valued by what is compatible, not what is profitable. It comes down to considering nature not as an economic resource but as a common – not a common we own but one we belonged to.”
Farah Hasanbegović, creative communicator of SCUB and film director
“On this journey we will always have a vivid memory of the warmth with which Vassilis from the Epirus Mushroom Society accompanied us: the kindness in the gesture of the harvest, the scrupulous attention in dusting the roots and turning the mushrooms upside down, the diligence in teaching us how to go and identify the gills, the sponge, the rings that differentiate the hundreds of species that inhabit this geography.”
Chiara Donà, International Relations and Projects Teatro della Toscana
The expedition brought together the traveling artists, cultural professionals, communicators and the project’s member partners from the Balkans and Europe, sitting on the same table to eat the collected mushrooms in the welcoming Guest House of Elati, with the guidance of the Epirus Mushroom Society, its members and its president Thanasis Ntinos and the local Cultural Association of the village of Elati.