How To Be Together

July 9-18, 2021
Santarcangelo Festival

“What is the use of imagining? To build representations of the world, of relationships, of oneself. To multiply scenarios and possible alternatives. To escape from the tyranny of the now-here, to criticize it, to overthrow it […] The imagination, however, is cultivated, trained, nourished, and when this does not happen it atrophies, becomes passive, discouraged. A person, a group, a people without imagination is automatically the victim of those who control the images for them. This is why imagining above all means doing politics.

Matteo Meschiari, The great extinction. Imagining at the time of the collapse


How To Be Together is a practice-based collective research that investigates possible forms of togetherness through an experiment of cohabitation in a temporary camp by a community of 50 participants: an eco village that will appear like a summer mirage.

How To Be Together sounds like a question posed with an anaphoric consistency by the pandemic crisis in 2020 that obsessively asks for the radical imagination of possible ways of being together in the awareness that collaborative practices are crucial for a different paradigm that get us out of a critical scenario generated by the neoliberal, competitive, individualistic and extractive system. The pandemic has deeply atomized the social fabric by emptying public spaces, confined to the sphere of a forbidden desire, promoting instead the encapsulation into the private and individual sphere. On top of the official divisive narrative that privileges binarism and polarization, the virus diffuses an immunitas vs communitas alarm that demonizes the Other revealing the fragilities and strong inequalities on which liberal democratic ideals are based.

With How To Be Together we look at possible forms of commonality, ways of reaffirming our own being multiple, a coexistence of identities as multitudes , and the necessity of living together relying on each other’s entanglements and interdependence, as a tentacular and boneless superorganism. We will do that by experiencing common life in a real-life camp and envisioning possible future societies.

The camp aspires to become a playground for alternative scenarios, an exercise in worldmaking, a speculative act to tune in the cacophony of the present. The camp is conceived as a turbine of multiple voices, bodies and perspectives, an imaginative site to cultivate and accelerate possible responses to current boiling questions and rehearse alternative futures to the neoliberal paradigm.


“Musing takes place in a kind of meadowlands of the imagination, a part of the imagination that has not yet been plowed, developed, or put to any immediately practical use…time spent there is not work time, yet without that time the mind becomes sterile, dull, domesticated. The fight for free space — for wilderness and public space — must be accompanied by a fight for free time to spend wandering in that space.”

Rebecca Solnit

How To Be Together articulates and investigates this pivotal question through the creation of a “camp”, a temporary eco-sustainable village, a utopian community that will settle in Santarcangelo di Romagna from the 9th to the 18th during next Santarcangelo Festival edition. In July the camp, previously developed as a site-specific space making project in June 2021, will open its spaces to a group of 50 participants eager to collaboratively dive deep into this question.

The participants will explore this question divided in smaller research groups of 10 people each starting from a specific angle to conduct an inquiry based on horizontal practices. Each participant will follow one research group throughout the project. Each group will be hosted by a facilitator whose role is to ensure a flow that will, however, be led by the participants: starting from their own practices and experiences they will try to move to a possible response to the question generated together. How to be together slowly shift to what can be done together that we could not do otherwise?

The groups will investigate How To Be Together looking at:

  • G1 “Space Commoning”: the spatial dimension as a playground to generate new postures and relations. Facilitated by Jozef Wouters and Bart Van den Eynde.

  • G2 “Communication as a magic ritual”, looking at the way we communicate as a time-space opener, as a bridge able to channel invisible presences. Facilitated by Lotte Van Den Berg and Peter Aers / Building Conversation.

  • G3 “More Than Human Ecosystem”, investigating how we can be together with other beings, possible and impossible, unspeakable relationship with other species and presences in a more systemic and haunted Reality. Facilitated by Cristina Kristal Rizzo.

  • G4 “Aesthetic and politics”: the transformative power of arts to trigger political change or institute an alternative political Ground. Facilitated by Riccardo Benassi.

  • G5 “Wilderness as alternative knowledge”; how to unlearn, dismiss our behaviors and codes while listening to kids. Facilitated by Valentina Pagliarani (this group will be composed by 5 adults and 5 kids aged 6/10).

This is a preliminary program. Besides facilitators and participants, others guests and artists, either already present at the festival or invited specifically to contribute to the research, from diverse geographical and cultural backgrounds, will cross the research groups, in person or digitally. This program will be developed with the participants and the facilitators and will be announced in June.


We welcome applications from artists, students, curators and cultural workers with an interest in exploring the question How To Be Together through a collaborative research, eager to reflect through experiencing and open to embrace an experiment of cohabitation in a temporary village of 50 people, sleeping in a tent for 10 days. The trust in open processes, an attitude for practice sharing and collective knowledge making are a must.

To apply send an email to detailing:


  • HOW YOU RESONATE WITH THIS QUESTION AND WHAT YOU ARE BRINGING TO THE CAMP (an object, a desire, a theme or a practice)



Application should be sent by Monday 24th of May, h 5 pm CEST.

A selection will be made due to limited capacity and will be based on balancing the research group’s composition according to criterias of diversification and inclusiveness. Please note that the outcome of the selection is not intended as an evaluation of your profile or professional capacity.


Participants commit to join the collective research and to stay in Santarcangelo di Romagna from the 9th to the 18th July 2021 (arriving day 8th July) living in the camp. They accept to sleep in a single tent (can be shared in case of couples/relatives) with shared facilities and limited comforts.

The project’s official language is English.

There are no fees to the program.

Participants will have accommodation covered for the entire duration of the project and reduced tickets to Santarcangelo Festival artistic program.

Each participant is responsible for their own travel expenses and meals.


24th of May, 2021


Notification of acceptance: May 31st, 2021.
Applicants to confirm participation: June 3rd, 2021.
You can submit your questions emailing within the 7th of May.

HTBT How To Be Together is developed and curated by Silvia Bottiroli, Frederik Le Roy, Sodja Lotker, Annalisa Sacchi, Chiara Organtini, Enrico Casagrande and Daniela Nicolò / Motus.

Organised by Santarcangelo Festival In collaboration with DAS Theatre in Amsterdam, KASK & CONSERVATORIUM School of Arts in Ghent, Haute École La Manufacture in Lausanne, Prague Performing Arts Academy, Iuav – Venice Theater and Performing Arts.

The project in all its phases will take place in compliance with the regulatory protocol of the measures in force for the contrast and containment of the spread of the Covid-19 virus.