Faculty of things that can’t be learned (FR~U) is an organization of cultural workers operating in the fields of education and production of contemporary visual arts and culture, with a distinct focus on methodology of research, engagement and collective action in different socio – political and cultural contexts. The idea of the faculty is referring to an educational as well as practical structure, consisting of things/ subjects/ classes that propose and research new models for teaching and learning, as well as insist on the principle of sharing, collaboration, self organization and mutual learning. It was created in 2000 as a informal platform of several artists, theatre, visual arts and architecture students and in 2003 it was established as an organization for production of contemporary arts and cultural events.
It builds its form out of two kinds of public programs and one platform:
- FR~U PRODUCTION This program critically addresses, examines and researches the issues of modernist visual and architectural heritage, aesthetics and policies and its consequences in the world of today. It is manifested through hybrid formats for action (exhibitions, performances, conferences, discussions etc.) produced through engaged dialogue and collaboration between cultural workers and interested groups and individuals.
- FR~U EDUCATION This program aims at creating open and critical educational practice in the country that stimulates knowledge that is subject to shared effort and exchange instead of being simply acquired or studied. One of the programs is the discursive and educational program for young artists THE PERFECT ARTIST, which focuses on dialogue, exchange of experience and debate, through both practice and theory. DENES Young Visual Artist Award in Macedonia is also part of the program.
Accompanying activity of both programs is the publishing of books, booklets and newspapers.
- FR~U PLATFORM: AKTO FESTIVAL FOR CONTEMPORARY ARTS FR~U started producing AKTO Festival in 2006 in Bitola and the festival has become a resilient, strong and contextual platform in promoting and producing interdisciplinary critical programs and concepts. It is a festival for contemporary arts, which tries to open not only topics relevant for the current socio-political and hence artistic reality, but also to stimulate production formats that stir up the status quo. The festival always happens in August in Bitola and is a parallel event with a subverting as well as an emancipating mission to the events produced by local municipalities and cultural institutions.
In 2016 and 2017, due to burning local issues and needs, AKTO re-branded into POP UP AKTO, a temporary concept of producing the festival in other cities in Macedonia. Besides Bitola, AKTO was so far produced in Skopje, Tetovo, Shtip, Kochani.
Art builds a free, diverse, open society.
The Organization for Contemporary Art and Culture “Faculty of things that can’t be learned (FR~U)” brings together cultural workers from Macedonia who through their research, discursive and educational programs produce and freely share knowledge in the field of the contemporary visual, socially engaged art, and contribute to its greater recognition, actuality and influence in Macedonian society and internationally.
Regarding the staff size of FR~U, the organization is consisted of 4 people involved in its daily functioning (Filip Jovanovski, artistic director and artist, Ivana Vaseva, program director and curator) and Oliver Musovikj (finance director) and Yana Kastratovic (adiminstration assistant/office Manager) involved in the project “Active Community Spaces for Citizen Changes”. But the team enlarges according to the different projects i.e. depends of the size, duration, scope and needs of the project goals. For example, the thirteenth edition of AKTO Festival for contemporary arts in 2018 consisted of 40 people team.
FR~U was supported by USAID Civil Engagement Project, USAID Macedonian Support Initiative, USAID Civil Society Project (CSP), European Cultural Foundation, Balkans Arts and Culture Fund (BAC), Foundation Open Society – Macedonia (FOSM), Friedrich Ebert Shiftung – Macedonia, Ministry of Culture of Republic of Macedonia, City of Skopje, City of Bitola.
FRU – Faculty of things that can’t be learned, Bitola/ Skopje
Address: Hristo Uzunov 3E
7000 Bitola, Macedonia
Tel. +389 70 700 998
+ 389 70 905 212