The Institute for the Imagination of the Mediterranean is a transdisciplinary pedagogical project that favours the encounter between artists and curators – whose practice adopts cooperative methodologies and whose research manifests itself through social and political processes – and regional groups and constituencies whose multiple forms of engagement operate locally and trans-locally.

Through a number of modules led by artists, curators, activists and experts from different disciplines, the activities that shape the programme address issues, urgencies and specificities of a region that positions itself in between Southern Europe and the Mediterranean area both in terms of its geography and in its cultural dimension.

In the context of the two pavilions at Fiera del Levante in Bari – in the region of Puglia, which Vessel has reclaimed and re-interpreted in collaboration with the architectural collective Kid A Playground Architecture, IIM connects a theoretical approach to the practice itself through the adoption of curatorial methodologies such as co-research and Participatory Action Research.

IIM is a centre for production and informal research that opens up to an expanded notion of citizenship to stimulate co-creation and re-composition of a collective dimension framed in a common transnational imaginary. By promoting exchange and mobility and by overcoming both physical and conceptual boundaries, the project activates new cultural ecologies that connect multiple local dimensions to planetary issues.

Starting in summer 2018 with workshops, talks, residencies and editorial activities, the IIM programme focuses on the uses, functions and models that help us re-think the forms governance and organisation of an art space, re-inventing through dialogical and self-reflexive forms already existing models that belong to heterogeneous contexts and geographies.