The European Commission has found that the project "European Capital of Culture Esch2022" in Luxembourg is on the right track.
The Commission regularly assesses the preparations made by those responsible for implementing the Esch2022 project. The current recommendations show that the Capital of Culture is living up to the Commission's expectations.
This was the conclusion of those responsible for the European Capital of Culture after analysing the recommendations addressed by the Commission to the Esch2022 team after its second follow-up report. In its original report, the Commission took note of the vast strategic work accomplished by the Capital of Culture with a view to carrying out this project in accordance with the cultural strategy at local, regional and national levels.
The analysis of the project by the Commission has led it to conclude that Esch2022 benefits from a stable political and financial situation as well as national recognition and the involvement of different actors, as evidenced by the national and international partnerships concluded by Esch2022 and presented in the monitoring report.
In collaboration with Luxembourg's Ministry of Culture, the leaders of Esch2022 gathered in the "Op der Schmelz" cultural centre in Dudelange at the end of May and presented to the Commission via videoconference their report for the year 2019 and the start of 2020. The Commission then assessed these elements and made recommendations on them, which it communicated to Esch2022 in July 2020.
In its latest recommendations, the Commission took note of the progress made by Esch2022 and presented thirteen recommendations, many of which are already being implemented. The Commission drew attention to the fact that the time has come to translate artistic visions into practice. Decisions should be made on all the projects to be retained and carried out, before informing the promoters of these projects as well as the general public. This process, which was carried out as part of the evaluation of the projects submitted during the call for projects, is almost coming to an end and Esch2022 has already started to inform the project leaders of its decisions on the various projects. The call for projects will be concluded this autumn and its results will then be presented to the public.
Other recommendations made in the Commission's report are also being implemented: alternative plans have been drawn up in the event of restrictions imposed by the coronavirus pandemic and the city is working on collaborations with artists and partners from all over Europe.
Esch2022 director general Nancy Braun explained: "Monitoring allows the European Commission to get an overview of the progress of a project. This report is positive for us because it reinforces the work we do every day. We are already working on implementing many of the recommendations".
Three follow-up meetings are organised for each Capital of Culture. During these meetings, officials meet with the European Commission and update it on the preparations for the Capital of Culture. Each meeting is accompanied by a report presenting the development of the project. This report shows how the preparations meet the criteria formulated by the Commission. This procedure is carried out to verify that the Capitals of Culture comply with these guidelines. The next recommendations for Esch2022 will arrive in autumn 2021.