LUCI and the European Capitals of Culture, a special relationship?
In the early eighties, the Greek and French culture ministers came up with the idea of designating every year a “City of Culture” from a European country. They intended to bring Europeans closer together by highlighting the richness and diversity of European cultures and raising awareness of their common history and values. Today, the European Capital of Culture programme (ECoC) is managed by the European Commission.
Since Athens in 1985, the title has been awarded to more than 60 cities across the European Union, and beyond. Out of those, LUCI is proud to count more than a dozen members that have been or will be awarded the title of European Capital of Culture – including eight since the network’s creation in 2002 (see the list below). And light, in all its facets, has played a major role in many of those cities’ bids!
In fact, this particular relation between LUCI’s cities and the ECoC programme will be explored in depth later this year: an international panel discussion on the issue will be held during the 2021 LUCI Annual General Meeting in Tartu, this October. Its theme? “Lighting in European Capitals of Culture”!
Our Capitals of Culture
8 LUCI members have been named European Capital of Culture since the network’s creation, in 2002:
- 2008: Stavanger (Norway) in 2008 – host of the latest LUCI City under Microscope!
- 2010: Pécs (Hungary), a founding member of the network
- 2011: Tallinn (Estonia)
- 2013: Marseille (France)
- 2020-2021: Galway (Ireland)
- 2022: Novi Sad (Serbia)
- 2024: Tartu (Estonia) – host of the next LUCI Annual General Meeting!
- 2026: Oulu (Finland)