European Voluntary Service

This is Pekarna's blog for EVS volunteers. Pekarna is a sending and hosting/receiving organisation for EVS volunteers and their volunteers (send and hosted ones) will keep you up to date about their work.

Evropska prostovoljska služba

Pekarna Magdalenske mreže Maribor te vabi, da se tudi ti pridružiš množici prostovljcev/-k Evropske prostovoljne službe (EVS) in odpotuješ v organizacijo po svoji izbiri v drugo državo EU. Smo pošiljajoča in gostiteljska organizacija EVS, ki mladim od 17. in do 30. leta za obdobje največ enega leta uredi vse podrobnosti za brezskrbno in povsem brezplačno delovanje v tujini.
Evropska prostovoljna služba je del programa ERASMUS + Mladi v akciji.

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Monday, 30 March 2020

Busy February

During February, at Pekarna Magdalenske Mreže we hosted and organized quite a number of events. It felt good to be busy, running between Pekarna, gallery, and ateliers.
In Gallery K18, we started with the third cycle of lectures on art history taught by Simon Žlahtić on topic: “National Movements and Art of 19th Century”, held every Wednesday.
 Art History Lectures by Simon Žlahtič in Gallery K18
Together with my ESC colleagues, Gilles and Lucas, and our coordinator Nataša, we held two presentations about LGBTQ+ community in Slovenia at Second gymnasium in Maribor, had workshop with kids at “Dom Antona Skale” and held presentation and cook-out at “TOTI DCA” with elderly
Presentation at the II. gimnazija Maribor
Presentation at TOTI DCA
For the Library of the Aunt Rosa we organized the screening of the documentary film "Beyond the Red Lines" and discussed about the struggles for climate justice, on both local and global level. Regarding the outdoor activities, we went through hell to remove the old sticker from K18’s façade, and after four days of scratching, we were victorious, but due the major reconstruction works of the street in front of the gallery, our labour goes unnoticed. 

Works on K18 facade
But inside the gallery, there was plenty to see and hear. We hosted Radio MARŠ where PMM colleagues and guests talked about PMM and K18 program.
We prepared Gilles’ photo exhibition titled “Wall(s) / Zid(ovi)”. Turnout on vernissage was amazing, and I was glad to see some fresh faces at the gallery. 

Vernissage at K18
Furthermore, we organized another cycle of lectures about the creation of contemporary USA in Gallery K18. Blaž Kosovel introduced us to the cycle with lecture “Creation of contemporary corporation and modern USA”. Week after followed second lecture by Primož Turk titled “The birth of management as tool of controlling people”. You are welcome to listen to recordings of lectures (in Slovene language) on SoundCloud:


Friday, 27 March 2020 the style of Jamie Oliver in front of everyone

Although February is the shortest of all months, it was no less eventful for me and the other volunteers than the other eleven parts of the year. From the fun-packed PDD workshops to LGBTQ + lectures in high school to a Toti DCA presentation, there were a lot of cool events this month that gave me a lot of joy and I would like to share with you. Of course, in addition to the new events and projects, the ones that were already running ones like the German class and RUBRIKA: FILMOPEKA were again integrated into my weekly routine this month. But one by one we start where the bull has the horns: at the beginning. PDD The workshops with the children are always great fun this month, in addition to sports games and exercise in the dormitory's fitness room, there was also a quiz on the menu, both of those activities were super fun for the children. Unfortunately, this was not quite the case for me, as I did not understand everything in the quiz in Slovenian, therefore I could not help the other volunteers as much as I would have liked to, but nonetheless it was very nice since I had some time to watch the happening and to enjoy the enthusiasm of those who were involved. Another highlight of the month was the LGBT workshops in the II. gymnasium. In which the other two European volunteers Filip and Gilles, together with me, prepared a presentation, the basis for a discussion round and a small glossary on the subject. Armed with what we had prepared we went into two classes to talk about this topic. For this we had two lessons 45 minutes each. But in addition to events for teenagers and children, we had an event for seniors. Gilles Fillip and I also worked closely together on this. We were invited to have an event as part of Toti DCA. We thought that a presentation about mental and physical health could be a nice idea and so we developed a concept for a lecture called "healthy body healthy mind". At the beginning we had thought of a quiz for self-test so that each participant could see how much he knows about healthy eating. We then discussed the need for various foods and the basic principles of nutrient supply and used one example to calculate the need for one person. afterwards there were healthy snacks for everyone, most of which we had prepared in advance. But not all of them, as the absolute highlight of the event, Gilles freshly cooked a vegetarian bread spread, with a lot of protein and unsaturated fatty acids, in the style of Jamie Oliver in front of everyone.
After the refreshment, the evening was concluded by Filip and his part of the presentation. Here he went into the safe use of media and explained how fake news in the internet can spread extremely quickly, even though they are not true. Rubriko Filmopeka got serious this month. I wrote my first two reviews. I was naturally excited and a bit nervous who they would be liked. because they were my first and I had put a lot of effort into it. Fortunately, everyone liked it. :) Of course there are still a few small things to improve. But I will tackle this in my next review. And last but not least, the German lessons. I look forward to every Thursday. I really enjoy passing on my language. Because the participants' thirst for knowledge also spurs me to constantly improve my method of conveying knowledge and my content. So in conclusion I can say that February was a very nice and varied month for me. And I hope that there will be some more months like this.


February by Gilles

The first week of February opened with a meeting with Renato, a teacher from the Maribor High School of Arts and Design. This first meeting was very encouraging because we could imagine having different types of workshops with the students. Tuesday was the third episode of my French course. I concentrated my course on how to explain where I live and what my activities are. As usual, it is always a very enriching moment to learn pedagogical notions. I really find satisfaction in seeing the participants progress more and more at each lesson.

I spent my Wednesday thinking about a photo selection for my exhibition Wall(s). It was a difficult moment because I had to search through about fifty images and try to find a way to resume or create a link between them. It was a rather complicated exercise but in the end it was beneficial.

On Friday, we had a workshop about the LGBTQI+ cause for the international class. We talked about the inclusion of LGBTQI+ people in today's society and gave some cultural backgrounds for teenagers to discover and be more interested in gender issues. We tried to make the workshop take the form of an active discussion so that the young people could express themselves freely and exchange with us. It was a test moment, we have revised our presentation because unfortunately the children stayed quite passive.
On Friday evening I went to Ljubljana with some friends to participate in the MENT festival and it was a wonderful surprise. I discovered many music bands and saw some friends there again. I hope to be able to go to the 2021 edition.

To start the second week of February we did a workshop about physical activity with children with disabilities. We had with us a ping pong competition. On Tuesday, we repeated our workshop on LGBTQI+ issues at the Second Gymnasium in Maribor. This time the group was very active and we could talk about the difficulties of being on the outside of the hetero-normative society. The young people had many questions and we were able to talk easily with them. Some of them even volunteered for the Maribor Pride.

In the evening, we held a workshop for TOTI DCA, an association of elderly people, called: Healthy mind, Healthy food. The workshop intended to give some nutritional advice but also to raise consciousness around the manipulation of images. First of all, we made a test around nutrition issues with participants. The group was split in two and it was a time of many discussions and debating. Then we made a guacamole in front of the participants so that they knew how to make a simple and tasty meal. Finally, the last part was more oriented to the manipulation of information and images. We talked about the dangers of information on the internet, then we argued and showed, through historical and artistic cases, that it was very simple to modify images to deviate their meaning. The audience was very enthusiastic.

I've been looking all week for a way to print my photos. I spoke with Gregor Salobir from the GT22 to find a good printer in Slovenia. I finally called Luminus Studio in Novo Mesto and it was a great choice. On Thursday, we had an event around global warming with the broadcast of a Franco-German documentary.

The third week has been, I think, the busiest since I've been here. It was the week of preparation for my exhibition. I learned a lot from that experience. My photos finally arrived earlier than expected, on Monday. The first difficulty was to find a way to fix them, because the photos were glued on cardboard without any fixation. But we found a solution and this week was very rich. The first thing was to choose a scenography to give the visitor a feeling of reading, then the technical constraints arrived. We had to choose a height for the photos, print and glue the cartels, print the text of the exhibition's intention, manage the lights and make the space clean for the Friday evening vernissage. The vernissage was a very emotional moment for me because it had been a very long time since I had exhibited and I had the great pleasure of seeing many friends, colleagues and partners come to see my work. I received excellent comments and even gifts. I really didn't expect such a warm welcome. The most difficult moment for me was the speech in English. Once again, I would like to thank all the Infopeka team but also my friends, especially Natnada, for their help.

During this busy week, Lucas and I also participated in Rubrika: Filmopeka where we wrote and analyzed our first reviews. Lucas chose to review one of the movie he hated the most: Fast and furious 8 and I chose to review my favorite movie: Mysterious Skin. It was interesting to have Damijan's advice and encouragement. I also took part in the first meeting with Rajzerfiber around the festival of marches. With Filip and Lucas we want to propose a march around music. We chose several places in the city and associated them with pieces of music we like. I'm also going to take a walk around the Maribor walls that inspire my pictures.

I went to the carnival in Ptuj on the weekend. The Kurent chased away the winter spirits. Spring is coming soon. Ptuj is really a beautiful city, I hope to meet there again to discover the inside of the castle. I really liked the medieval atmosphere of the city. The costumes of the Kurent are impressive, I'm very happy to have been able to participate of the carnival.

The last week of February was quieter. We ended with the vegan meal, which is always very interesting. This time we watched a documentary about capitalism. I think veganism and anti-capitalism are intimately linked. It was, as usual, an excellent evening for his critical mind but also for his stomach.

Thanks for taking the patience to read my blog, see you in March for a special blog. A Coronavirus special edition

Tuesday, 3 March 2020

January by Filip

After holiday travels, I returned to Maribor to continue my ESC volunteering in Pekarna Magdalenske Mreže. For most of the time, we have been busy with the organizational meetings, application deadlines and writing grant reports for the projects and programs in 2020/21. The whole process was quite instructive, and I think I learned a lot about the workings and goings of NGO papyrology in EU. The whole experience makes me feel less eager to write my own projects, because most workers in cultural and educational sphere, I assume, would prefer to deal with content rather than papyrology, and I am one of them, but I guess those are just idle thoughts. 

Anyway, we’ve prepared GuestRoomMaribor Open Call for the 2020. GuestRoomMaribor (henceforth GRM) is artist-in-residence program in Maribor which is active since 2011. GRM is a delightful platform for international exchange of artistic and cultural content. GRM offers support and cooperation to local and international audience, as well as to other NGO’s by creating a common space between these actors in order to boost the sharing of experience and knowledge between each other. GRM streams to address contemporary issues by critically engaging with power relations in current regime, to question the role of art in these relations and to puts focus on the local culture and politics of Maribor throughout participatory, site-specific art projects and interventions.

Submission deadline for the GRM open call:  29th of February 2020. I am looking forward to meeting our incoming GRM residents!
Lep pozdrav!