Asia Does Not Exist
InlanDimensions International Arts Festival has established itself as Central Europe’s largest multidisciplinary festival that rejects a differentiation between Europe and Asia, building bridges between different countries and cultures. Presenting a kaleidoscope of arts ranging from theatre, performance, dance and cinema to music, literature and visual arts, it brings together artists and audiences from all over the world, launching co-productions and facilitating negotiations between venues and producers through professional language services. Though the central focus of InlanDimensions is on postwar to postmodern art, the festival does not break up with tradition, stressing its transformations and influence on contemporary art. It introduces audiences to the concept of Eurasian theatre and film as a marriage of diverse cultures and genres within a piece of art.
InlanDimensions International Arts Festival 2022 shines a spotlight on contemporary arts in Eurasia, in order to make the viewer realise the commonalities and differentiations between the various nations and cultures, contesting ingrained stereotypes with “Asia does not exist” as its watchword, quoted after the Ambassador of this year’s festival, celebrated expert in literature and Polish studies Prof. Sekiguchi Tokimasa. When we speak of East and West ambiguities inevitably pile up, beginning with the question: Where does East actually begin, and is it not perhaps the case that certain populations which appear Oriental in the eyes of the others see themselves as Western? In order to detect the thin lines between East and West these questions were posed by Jerzy Grotowski, Allardyce Nicoll, Eugenio Barba or Nicola Savarese. Prof. Sekiguchi is echoing them emphatically when he says “What I wish to say is extremely simple. ‘Asia’ as such does not exist and the term ‘Asia’ is unnecessary as a coherent geographical category that has relevant components in reality. My line of argument is very simple as well. It is facts themselves that do not uphold the term ‘Asia’ but confirm that the use of it is redundant. On the contrary, by application of the term our perception of the world gets warped in a way that is hard to avoid and, even worse, hard to pinpoint, and the distorted world image ultimately triggers a distortion of self-knowledge – the image of ourselves.” These InlanDimensions are, after all, where Arabs, Jews, Indians, Turks, Chinese, Persians, Mongols, Koreans, Malaysians, Japanese and even Russians live. How to find a common denominator in any of the possible categories – geographical, demographic, linguistic, religious or even culinary?