In search of Europe

Preceding the Dutch EU presidency Flemish artist Lucas de Man proposed a bold idea: he would be travelling through the EU and find young and somewhat older people to explain him how Europe is changing and could be changed. ECF supported Lucas de Man in his plan with networks and some financial help. Upon return Lucas de Man and his team created a lecture performance called ‘In search of Europe’ and eventually an adaptation for television. The performance ‘In Search of Europe’ was one of the highlights in the cultural programme of the Dutch EU presidency ‘Europe by People’. Thanks to Lucas de Man and his team we can now share some of his insights with all of you:

“For his project In Search Of Europe, Lucas De Man travelled to 17 cities in 8 countries in 30 days. He interviewed more than 20 young creators (creative professionals), who are trying to change the society they live in for the better. What struck him is that there is a new generation awakening in Europe and that they are ready to fight for change. Inspired by this journey, Lucas made and performed a lecture performance De Man in Europe.

In this performance Lucas relates the transition period our continent is in now, to the previous paradigm changing period: the shift from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. At that time a generation of visionaries emerged with Erasmus, Thomas More and Luther, on whose ideas Europe as we know it now was built. Is something similar happening now?

For in Search of Europe Lucas took a camera team and a journalist from De Correspondent with him to look for our current European generation; Who are the visionaries? How do they see our time and society? Where do they stand in current hot issues, such as new democracy, (the enclosure of) the commons and Europe. What do they think should change and, more importantly, what are they doing about it?

In the documentary, In Search of Europe, meeting modern visionaries, Lucas shares the highlights and main insights of his journey. Meet the creators, discover their projects and see how for this generation it’s not about creating a better world, but about creating a piece of society.”


Note: This post presents a trailer for the documentary, which premiered on April 5, 2016, in Pakhuis de Zwijger as part of the program Europe by People, the cultural program organised around the Dutch chairmanship of the European Union. The documentary will be shown several times within the program. For more information, check

Originally published on Introduction text by Friso Wiersum. Wiersum works at ECF as project officer communications. He also is a member of urban do tank Expodium. He regularly publishes on art, public space and music.

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.