21 February 2023

On Tuesday 21 February an international program will be launched in Italy, that will put the spotlight on contemporary Dutch arts for children and youth for a year: FuturoPresente. A selection of Dutch theatre makers, writers, illustrators, choreographers and film makers present themselves to the Italian public and professionals. With the aim of strengthening the professional networks between the countries, entering into new partnerships and sharing experiences.

FuturoPresente builds on sustainable exchange of professionals

Important partners of FuturoPresente are Bergamo and Brescia, the cultural capitals of Italy in 2023, which open their stages, cinemas and galleries to Dutch arts for children and youth. Other partners include major festivals such as the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, the Giffoni Film Festival, Festival RomaEuropa, the Turin Book Fair, Segni d’Infanzia and Internazionale Kids. There will also be various masterclasses and artistic exchanges and a symposium on cultural participation and cultural education between the two countries.

Arts for Children and Youth in demand in Italy

In recent years, Dutch artists have done remarkably well in Italy. For example, theatre maker Jetse Batelaan won a Silver Lion at the Venice Biennale, writer Annet Schaap was winner of the Strega Prize and director Flynn von Kleist triumphed at the Giffoni Film Festival 2021. The extent to which children’s and youth culture in the Netherlands is embedded as a fully-fledged art form, is admirable, as is the extent to which inclusiveness and representativeness are given a place. Unlike in Italy, challenging and sometimes controversial themes are not shunned for children and young audiences, such as divorce, emancipation, gender identity, climate crisis, racism, war and sexuality.

Willem van Ee, the Dutch ambassador to Italy, says: “Italy is the ideal platform to present Dutch cultural projects for young adults and children. The cultural sector here is very lively and looks with interest at arts for children and youth from the Netherlands. It is special that we can bring together young generations from both countries in this programme!”.

FuturoPresente is a special initiative of the Embassy and Consulate-General of the Netherlands in Italy and four major Dutch cultural institutions Performing Arts FundNL, Dutch Foundation for Literature, Dutch Cultural Participation Fund and SeeNL.