“The small team behind Rotterdam’s International Community Arts Festival have achieved outstanding results in the past fifteen years, creating Europe’s most important platform for participatory art and its best opportunity for networking”
François Matarasso, A Restless Art (Londen & Lissabon: Gulbenkian Foundation, 2019: 197)
ICAF is a multi-trajectory, international program. We are at once a digital platform, a global network, and, every three years, an international festival that emerges in Rotterdam, showcasing community arts organisations, professionals, and practices from across the world. ICAF’s main goal is to offer space for reflection and development of the community arts movement, locally, nationally, and internationally.
We do that not only through our platform and festival, but also by producing summer schools, artist-in-residencies and new-makers trajectories.
We are relationship-based people and a relationship-based organisation. In the centre of everything we do are our reciprocal connections with artists, groups, and thinkers within the community arts field. Therefore we make it our daily job to nurture this expanding and vibrant network.
At ICAF you can explore unique, community-based art projects, engage in debates and discourse from across the field, and meet highly engaged artists and enthusiasts who make it their daily endeavour to bridge the distance between worlds, communities, and people from all walks of life.
Everything ICAF produces is built around the idea that community art is a worldwide, cutting edge and urgent arts movement – the only one of its kind. Furthermore, for ICAF, understanding the context behind each community arts practice is central to all that we do, to ensure we actively build bridges to communicate between differences in knowledge and experiences across social, economic, geographic, and political boundaries.
As such, ICAF is a laboratory, a place to experiment, taking form as a temporary school, a gathering, a seminar, a meal, a dance, a moveable feast, and, yes, a hub, a platform and a festival too!