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Bernard Faivre d’Arcier: “A festival is to help artists to dare, to engage in new projects”

10 March 2014

In the run-up to the Atelier for Young Festival Managers in Edinburgh from 3-10 April 2014, all presenters who will participate in the Atelier to exchange with 52 young artistic festival directors from all over the world will be introduced. One of them is Bernard Faivre d’Arcier, former long-standing Director of the Avignon Festival and President of the Lyon Biennial in France. He joined the team of presenters at the Atelier GÖRLITZ 2006, the Atelier VARNA 2009, the Atelier SINGAPORE 2011, and the Atelier LJUBLJANA 2012.

“The true role of a festival is to help artists to dare, to engage in new projects,” said Bernard Faivre d’Arcier.

Bernard Faivre d'Arcier studied Economy, Business Management and Political Science. He decided to work for the Ministry of Culture rather than for the Ministry of Finance. Cultural policy, in his opinion, is just as important as economic policy. He was leading and advising boards of directors in numerous art organisations in France and across Europe.

He was Deputy Director of the National Audiovisual Institute, Deputy to the President of the National Centre of Cinematography, Director of the Centre National du Théâtre, and Culture Advisor to the French Prime Minister Laurent Fabius. He also worked with the biggest festivals all over the world. He was the Director of the Avignon Festival (1979-1984 and 1993-2003) and Consultant of festivals in Houston, Tokyo and Rome. With consulting and designing clear artistic visions he influences political strategies of arts. Furthermore, Bernard Faivre d'Arcier was Head of the Cultural Development Department at the Ministry of Culture in France (1984-1986), Chairman of the International Fund for the Promotion of Culture (UNESCO), and Commissioner for the Hungarian and the Polish Cultural Season in France.

He launched the television channel La Sept, now Arte, and is a founder of the European Theatre Network Theorem.

Currently, he is the President of the Lyon Biennial in France, Vice President of the Theatre de la Ville de Paris, Cultural Consultant at BFA-Conseil, and the initiator of the Cultural Cooperation Institution Metz en scene.

“Bernard Faivre d'Arcier is a strategic thinker with endless experience on various levels of cultural leadership. He is always alert for shifts and possible turnouts in political, economical and social terms that might influence the world of art and vice versa,” said one of the Atelier LJUBLJANA participants in 2012.

Nine renowned mentors from all over the world will guide the participants throughout the seven days of the Atelier EDINBURGH 2014 under the coordination of Hugo De Greef (former EFA Secretary General (2004-2008), Director European Capital of Culture Bruges 2002; Co-Founder Kaaitheater, Brussels, Belgium): Mark Ball (Artistic Director London International Festival of Theatre (LIFT), UK), Bernard Faivre d’Arcier (former long-standing Director Avignon Festival, President Lyon Biennial, France), Heiner Goebbels (Artistic Director Ruhrtriennale, Germany), Nele Hertling (Vice President of the Academy of Arts Berlin, Germany), Grace Lang (Programme Director Hong Kong Arts Festival Society, China), Joseph V. Melillo (Artistic Director Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), USA), Michal Merczyński (General Director Malta Festival Poznań, Poland), and Jonathan Mills (Festival Director and Chief Executive Edinburgh International Festival, UK).

More information about the Atelier EDINBURGH 2014 can be found on the Atelier website.