Six weeks ago, the Corona pandemic brought the entire cultural landscape in Germany to a standstill. The closures of facilities, the cancellation of events, the restrictions in everyday life - all this hits authors, musicians, festival makers, (program) cinema operators, artists and many other culture makers tremendously: psychologically, economically and socio-politically.
That's why the Frankfurt Book Fair and Spreadshop are now launching the sale of merchandise, the proceeds of which will benefit the cultural sector. T-shirts, masks, mugs and cloth bags with the imprints "Culture never sleeps.", "Stay home. But let art in.", "Apart in isolation. Connected by culture." and "Culture is alive." are now available in the shop (shop.spreadshirt.de/createyourrevolution). Proceeds go to "Kulturzeiter*in" (www.kulturzeiterin.de) - a project of a group of culturally affine and (socially) politically engaged people in Frankfurt am Main and Offenbach - and thus benefit artists* and cultural workers from the region whose existence is threatened.
The action takes place within the framework of CREATE YOUR REVOLUTION (CYR). In 2019, the Frankfurt Book Fair had already focused on the relevance and necessity of culture for our society with the initiative - in cooperation with THE ARTS+, ARTE, the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels, Spreadshop and the United Nations (UN). CYR allowed people to speak who have realized that they can change the world for the better through their creative actions. With the participation of Igor Levit, Luisa Neubauer, Ai Weiwei, Andrea Venzon, Milo Rau, Hanns Zischler, Lady Bitch Ray and many more, the initiative has created a discourse about the role culture plays against the backdrop of political and social upheaval and what it can achieve.
"Seldom has it been as clear as it is today: culture is indispensable! It not only provides orientation and belonging in our own societies. Rather, it is an essential instrument for us to communicate and understand each other as a global society. Only in this way will we be able to master global challenges, develop a common vision for the future", is how Katja Böhne, Head of Marketing and Communications at the Frankfurt Book Fair, explains the campaign.
The importance of culture, especially in times that threaten the very existence of the world, is also shown by the daily increase in what is on offer online: readings, podcasts, theatre performances and concerts are streamed, DJs play live on the internet and zoos and museums also invite visitors to take virtual tours. Pianist Igor Levit even streams live from his living room almost every night, reaching thousands of people who thank him for this free engagement.
"It's great to see what all the artists* are putting up right now, how they bring warmth, comfort and inspiration into our lives. We are just learning as a society how to stick together across distance. That's why we're showing solidarity with those who desperately need our help right now. So that our culture lives on after Corona", explains Philip Rooke, CEO of Spreadshirt.
Go to the store: shop.spreadshirt.de/createyourrevolution