Confluence of European Water Bodies

Coming up!

New edition of the Confluence of European Water Bodies:

October 3 – 6, 2024 in Venice

After a successful first Confluence of European Water Bodies in September 2023 on the shores of the Mar Menor, we are proud to announce a new edition of this watery nomad conference. From October 3 – 6, 2024, the second Confluence of European Water Bodies will take place in Venice, hosted by TBA21–Academy’s Ocean Space.

Learning system

Water is vital for all life on Earth, yet her voice is rarely heard in political decision-making. Born out of growing water challenges and demands for water democracy worldwide, the Confluence of European Water Bodies sprang from a collective pursuit of a deeper understanding of ‘Rights of Nature’ in Europe, from a cultural perspective. Formed by over 25 grassroots communities of artists, activists, lawyers and ecologists, representing seas, lakes, rivers,  lagoons and glaciers from all over Europe, this growing community of care and concern aims to foster new dialogues and relationships with water. As a learning system for water diplomacy, new strategies for effective representation of water in Europe’s cultural, legal and political realm are being explored, rehearsed and advocated.

Participating water bodies

Akerselva, Baltic Sea, Dogger Bank, Drina, Genova waters, Klarälven, Loire, Mar Menor, Mediterranean Sea, Moraca & Tara, North Sea, Ouse, Pek, Piave, Reuss, Rhône, Senne, Snæfellsjökul, Spree, Tagliamento, Tejo, Venice Lagoon, Vistula, Viskan & Lake Vättern

To learn more about the participating water bodies, scroll down.

Re-stor(y)ing Oceania

The Confluence of European Water Bodies 2024 is part of the closing events of the exhibition Re-stor(y)ing Oceania (March 23–October 13, 2024) at Ocean Space Venice. This exhibition, curated by Bougainville-born artist Taloi Havini, comprises art works by Indigenous artists from the Pacific, Latai Taumoepeau and Elisapeta Hinemoa Heta. Havini’s curatorial vision is guided by an ancestral call-and-response method as a means to seek solidarity and kinship in times of uncertainty.

Programme 3 – 6 October 2024

— Thursday October 3: all waters will gather at Ocean Space for a welcome ceremony led by the Water Bodies Orchestra in collaboration with the Venice Climate Change Pavilion (Closed session), followed by the screening of I am the river, the river is me, a river movie starring the Whanganui River in New Zealand, the world’s first ecosystem with legal personhood. Open to all

— Friday October 4: academic programme with two panels – one on legal, one on artistic strategies – hosted by NICHE (THE NEW INSTITUTE Center for Environmental Humanities) at Ca’ Foscari University. Closed session

— Saturday October 5: excursion to Poveglia, a small island in the central Lagoon of Venice, for a meeting with local activists. In the afternoon, there will a workshop for the Diplomatic Suitcase at Panorama Gallery. Closed session

— Sunday October 6: Assembly in Ocean Space for the Grave di Ciano, a riverbed of the Piaver River threatened by ill-thought climate adaptation strategies, in collaboration with Arts4theCommons. Activists from the area will bring their testimonies and the voice of the river will be heard. In the afternoon, we will close the Confluence with performances and ceremonies by the River Sisters (Vistula) and Jessie Jack Ullevalseter (Akerselva). Open to all

Are you interested in supporting the Confluence of European Water Bodies, make a donation here