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We ae..

We are


collectively organized


The boat


How it stared

How it started

The Boat Collective started with self-organized theater classes in the midst of Europe’s largest, most inhumane refugee camp, Moria camp on Lesvos island, Greece at the end of 2019. We started our collective artistic journey to cope with the difficulties we experienced and our efforts to develop environments for social support, creative expression and connection at a time when it was needed the most. The volatile situation refugees are forced to live in, considering the policies and practices of deterrence implemented in Greece, left most members of our collective living in limbo for years. Yet, we managed to nurture safe spaces for artistic expression and bonds which gave us the opportunity to support each other with the challenges around us. Over the two years in Lesvos we grew into a close-knit network of artists, debuting our own self-led performance ‘The Boat’ in August 2021. The Boat was an interdisciplinary theater performance connecting various forms of non-verbal art including acting, dance, and music/sound to explore themes of inequality and inhumanity in today's global society. August 2021 was a stepping stone for our collective but also a turning point. Changing policies, practices, and procedures allowed the majority of our collective to leave Lesvos. Some of us have moved to Athens, while others have sought protection and opportunities in other countries including Germany, Switzerland, and Italy. In Athens our team has expanded, with more artists joining the collective through various forms of creative expression. These developments have reshaped our collective to an ever growing network of artists, where members engage in their decided manner. Our aim as a collective is to provide support and amplify one another's art and creativity and build solidarity in the communities we live in.


Our values and approach

Our collective doesn't define any art because all art forms can be performed and practiced in this space. Artists performing and collective members can engage and express political, social, economic, cultural and educational (etc.) issues through their art. This place is for the use of all members of society except those who do not believe in the true equality of human beings and freedom of all. Our collective and collective spaces will be there to create a sense of belonging and acceptance for marginalized communities. Our collective and collective activities and projects are safe spaces for opportunity, self-development, self- expression, and systemic change to structures of education. We will always be open to anyone to participate, create and lead, especially those who feel marginalized such as refugees, migrants, persons forced into precarious living conditions, people who resist existing political and societal structures, people who lack access to art courses, individuals and groups who need a safe space for self-expression including but not limited to LGBTQIA+, women, youth and any other vulnerable minority in the heteronormative and patriarchal system. The boat is a refugee-led, anti-racist, non-nationalistic inclusive network of young artists and creatives who practice and perform various forms of art.

Within the Boat Art Collective we uphold certain values that are non negotiable to us:


We are inclusive.

We spread hope.

We treat everyone equally.

We help and support each other.

We break boundaries through art.

We are accountable for our actions.

We are honest and trust each other.

We make all members and participants feel at home.

We respect each other's individuality and treat each other with kindness.

We encourage, strengthen and give the lead to the community around us.

The team

We, the boat collective, are artists, engineers, doctors, cultural mediators, electricians, students, social workers, carpenters, business people, educators, travelers, humans, friends, cats, dogs, fighters, activists. We are all part of the neighborhood around the boat art center, coming from various places, have various backgrounds and represent a variety of groups.

Social Cooperative Enterprise

Cooperative Enterprise

In late 2022, the Boat Collective started the registration process as an official social cooperative enterprise in Greece with the aim of participating and having a voice and an appearance as a group and with the outcomes of our works in Greek society and public life. We are here, we exist, we have something to say and we want to be seen.

What is a social cooperative enterprise?

In 2011, the concept of social cooperative enterprises was introduced in Greek law as a special form of a civil cooperative with an explicit social purpose. Social cooperative enterprises are part of the social and solidarity economy, which combines economic sustainability, social coherence and nature protection with democratic and humanitarian principles. The two main characteristics of such enterprises are the egalitarian and self-managed internal structure, avoiding hierarchical structures, as well as the external outputs, which include the social impact of what the enterprise does and the social commitment of the financial income in case of an economic activity/income. A social cooperative enterprise is launched by a community or group of people of which 50 percent belong to a marginalized community and is based on equal participation, cooperation and solidarity by its members and moreover has an explicit aim to benefit the community. Each member has an equal vote in the decision-making process, so the voting power is distributed equally, unlike in capitalistic businesses where power is based on capital ownership. Especially in countries with a high unemployment rate, where the market and public interventions cannot or no longer meet needs of the community, social cooperative enterprises can be ways to meet and protect existing and new existential demands of society, such as the inclusion and integration of marginalized and disadvantaged communities or areas as well as the participations of those communities in public life and society.

"We are here, we exist, we have something to say and we want to be seen!"
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