On 16-17 August, Liepāja will become the venue for the educational conference "ArtMatters!". The conference is organised by the National Centre for Education as part of the project "Skola2030" together with partners to inspire teachers and provide a space for sharing experiences. The conference aims to highlight the importance of culture and arts education in a broader context and to promote professional cooperation among teachers.
The conference will include workshops, masterclasses and discussions, an opportunity to meet experienced culture and arts professionals, get to know colleagues from across Latvia and build the grounds for future networking. Several sessions will also be streamed online. Around 300 teachers and educational authorities from allover Latvia have already registered for the conference.
Liepāja was selected as the venue for the event for a reason – experiencing its cultural milieu is one of the conference's core components. The opening of the conference will take place in the legendary "Pūt, vējiņi!" concertgarden, the first day will culminate in the historic “Kursa” club, and the entire conference's finale will take place in the "Great Amber" concert hall. The sessions are to take place in the historical buildings of Liepāja State Gymnasium No.1 and the Faculty of Humanities and Arts of the Liepāja University. Participants will have the opportunity to sign up for a guided Liepāja tour, as well as to learn more about Liepāja on its journey to become the European Capital of Culture 2027.
Among others, Baiba Moļņika, Secretary General of the Latvian National Commission for UNESCO; Austra Avotiņa, Associate Professor, Faculty of Pedagogy, Psychology and Arts, University of Latvia, art researcher; Irēna Nelsone, Associate Professor, Department of Art Education at the Music Academy of Latvia and music teaching methodologist; Lita Silova, Rīga French Lyceum teacher, literature researcher; Zanda Gūtmane, Professor, University of Liepāja, literature researcher and others will share their inspiration stories at the opening of the conference.
Besides listening to inspiration and experience sharing, on the first day of the conference participants will take part in workshops and discussions to get ideas on how to apply the new learning approach in their work.
A series of panel discussions and debates will also take place on the same day, such as "How to find the courage to express an idea?", "How to teach about and through art?" etc. Panellists will include well-known public figures such as Professor Mārcis Auziņš from the University of Latvia, Vita Liepiņa, Head of the Liepāja Creative Industries Incubator, Baiba Bartkeviča, Artistic Director of the Great Amber Concert Hall and the European Capital of Culture 2027 programme (un)rest, and others.
The second day of the conference will feature masterclasses for teachers of literature, visual arts, music, theatre arts and culture. For example, Aleksejs Naumovs, professor and painter at the Latvian Academy of Arts, will illustrate plein air painting; Andris Akmentiņš, poet and lecturer at the Liepāja University Writing Studies Programme, will conduct a poetry masterclass with some creative games; and Ilze Arne, composer and lecturer at the Latvian Academy of Music, will focus on practical methods to inspire kids to write down music.
Conference cooperation partners are the Liepāja City Municipality, the British Council in Latvia, Liepāja State Gymnasium No.1, the Faculty of Arts and Humanities of the Liepāja University, the Latvian National Commission for UNESCO, the Latvian Academy of Culture, the Latvian School Bag Programme of the Latvian National Centre for Culture and the Ziedonis Class.
Visit the website skola2030.lv for more details about the conference and registration.