Foreword

Cells of creative activism - positive mutations in society

To gather knowledge, experience and ideas about the role of creative activism in society and to generate a tool for evolutions in urban and rural communities is the aim of this book. With Microevolutions the Mašta collective draw parallels between the street rebel attitudes and the city developers viewpoints, the social workers and community activists missions and artists self-explorations.

While defining creative activism, it becomes clear that there is very thin line between activism, creativity and art. Working with the metaphor of a cell, we explored the appearances of the creative activism and found few common characteristics: it is usually unconventional in the ways to address issues, it appears in unexpected contexts, it connects the techniques of art with tactics of activism, its bottom-up, quite often anonymous and certainly a positive statement in a problematic situation.
 
The Mašta  collective was formed in year 2009 as an initiative of young people, who met in Berlin to create a thoughtful and colorful magazine on creative activism, also known as the 1st issue of the Mašta  magazine. Through the years the network has developed as a  cooperation between NGOs based in Berlin, Asturias, Scotland, Latvia, the Netherlands and other nice places, supported by a network of activists, artists and curious citizens from Europe and overseas.
 
After creating 8 issues of the magazine, setting up a web platform and making trainings, youth exchanges, informal meetings and creative laboratories, we came to a point where it became necessary to gather the experiences about creative activism in a shape of a handbook that can be passed on to other multipliers.
 
This book is developed in a collaborative process between young people based in Germany, Latvia, Scotland and Spain (thanks to various open source online tools that made it possible). Through difficult discussions and consensus processes, here its the result - the handbook about creative activism.
 
The book is an online platform where anyone can join and add new articles, we offer a structure and programmed web tool to be used and hope that somewhere in some years the book will have doubled the volume with quality contributions about creative acts and methods from around the globe.
 
Have a nice journey!
 
Yours truly,
Mašta crew