We started Spazio Nour (which means Light in Farsi) with one goal in mind: to create beauty and show beauty for people in Milan. Over the years we’ve gathered a group of unique and free souls from all over the world: artists, designers, professionals, passioned amateurs who inspire and are inspired by others.
Spazio Nour is an artistic and cultural project born in Milan in 2014 with the goal to create a place of mediation between the language of contemporary art and the context in which it was being used. We are then talking about not just an atelier d’artiste nor an isolated center with an abstract and far idea of art. Spazio Nour is an ever-evolving relationship hotbed, an experience that places in the heart of the battle the most urgent questions of modern society – immigration, integration, equal dialogue between cultures.
During the last seven years, Spazio Nour adopted a synergic model, based on participatory art and site-specific. The model has as final goal the promotion of new forms of cultural integration through the organization of workshops, expositions, art residency projects meetings and collaborations with an international background. Through this work process, Spazio Nour created a fertile ground for mutual trust, actively and positively affecting the everyday life at Bligny 42.
Spazio Nour is housed in the internal courtyard of Viale Bligny 42, the building located in the city center, between Porta Romana and via Bocconi, in that stretch of road that reveals a parallel world, the one known to the Milanese chronicle as a theater of dealing and petty crime.
Before Spazio Nour Bligny 42 was "El Camerùn", drug fort, world building, there are many names that Bligny is known for 42 and this reflects the multiple identities of the building.
Its courtyard is the beating heart of this microcosm, it is not just a common transit space, but a real square, where the encounter and clash between different cultures and lives take place.
Contemporary art is a mean to stimulate and create new social dynamics. Thanks to Spazio Nour, at Bligny 42 it breaks two barriers: the one between different cultures and the one between art and audience, who is called to reject its passive position and participate in the different forms of the artwork itself.
After seven years in Milan, Spazio Nour expanded internationally as a nomadic art space to Antwerpen (Belgium), a city which houses more than 166 different nationalities. With its synergic model created over the years in Milan, Spazio Nour tackles difficulties in a complete different context in Antwerpen by bringing these various cultures together in moments of (public) encounter. To bring the arts to the people in everyday life, to connect people through participative arts, to eventually create a strong community where everybody with his unique features belongs.
Art saves the world.
“Spazio Nour” is a socio-cultural meeting place that listens to the needs of the social system in which it settles. In “Spazio Nour” the different possible languages of contemporary art are intertwined with social design, in the form of a unique model of urban renewal. The main goal of “Spazio Nour” is to develop a behavioural model, allow it to evolve further and apply it in daily life: to offer people a cultural “safe space” where they can meet, and create new, shared spaces that synchronize with the needs of the environment. “Spazio Nour” patiently explores the social fabric of torn urban realities where social and cultural stratification is ubiquitous, and responds with site-specific art initiatives. It is a gradual and intense process, based on empathy and listening to the needs of those around us – for that reason, an extremely effective process. Transformation is possible and within reach.
Making art is making cities.
There is no art without society, and there is no society without art. “Spazio Nour” was born in a heterogeneous community with which it started a dialogue, using the universal language of art. The vision that moves us is based on the ancient Japanese technique of kintsugi, applied to people and society.
Kintsugi is the technique in which a special resin is used as glue, supplemented with gold, silver or platinum. Broken parts of an object are thus joined together again, not only bringing the object back to life, but also adding extra value to it. Each repaired item becomes priceless as it is upscaled with unique and unrepeatable patterns of golden lines.
Beauty springs from what is broken, the break generates a rebirth. Also in our cities, numerous cracks are (more or less) visible. The bigger the cracks get, due to a lack of communication and an increase in intolerance, the more the city bleeds. The golden line with which we reattach these fractions, is art. Art has an enormous capacity, is able to break through the cultural and ethnic walls that are being built in our cities.
“Spazio Nour” activates a healing process in a specific community where it creates cross-disciplinary, site-specific, time-demarcated artistic projects. The community in which it operates at that moment, is the protagonist and recipient of artistic action; performances, workshops, installations, participatory projects and festivals are intended as artistic experiments and regenerative tools. "Spazio Nour" is a work of art that evolves continuously, it is able to make real and significant changes in the context in which it operates. “Spazio Nour” creates situations, moments of meeting and space that stimulates the development of an active and participating community, in which the local residents are at the same time recipient and initiator of the initiatives. In this way, “Spazio Nour” builds a fertile foundation of mutual trust, which actively and positively effects the daily reality of the surrounding community.
Spazio Nour is a shared project that reflects the soul of those who contribute to it. The main values of our practices are:
Giving. We are all active participants and implementers of change that we all need, making sure that all of the experiences, skills and capacities that we have ourselves are available to everyone. In “Spazio Nour” we believe that everything we give will come back. In this way we make a difference in the city.
Telling stories. Every form of art gives, tells and collects memories - from painting to music, from cinema to poetry, from cooking to photography. All people who come into contact with us are storytellers of new and different realities. The artist tells about the world from his point of view, which is an integral part of our idea of change.
Dreaming. Confidence in the future requires courage, and at the same time is the first step to envisioning new possible worlds. “Spazio Nour” is a shared dream, in which we can grow. Its continuation forces us to invariably look for new ways to enable that growth.
Building. By becoming aware of what is worn out, fragmented and destroyed in our living environment, we move ourselves towards reconstruction; a sustainable, human reconstruction capable of filling the empty spaces of our cities with new, extraordinary possibilities.