We are Trans Europe Halles, we are a network, we are soulmates, we are 162, we are creatives, we are alternative, we are independent, we are community-driven, we are from everywhere, we are artists, we are thinkers, we are urbanists, we are ecologists, we are builders, doers and dreamers, we are a force of transformation, we are sharers, we are caretakers, we are learners and educators, we are strategists, we are activists, we are in solidarity, we are a family.
The long and short of it
We are an international NGO with our headquarters in Lund, Sweden. A member-led force for change driven by a bottom-up, activist spirit that challenges conventions. We have been at the forefront of repurposing abandoned buildings for arts, culture and activism since 1983.
Rooted in repurposed spaces across the world, our members recognize and embrace the untapped potential of urban spaces. In collaboration with local communities, they breathe life and creativity into neglected places, transforming them into vibrant hubs.
They are the trailblazers, the movers and shakers, the catalysts of change—daring visionaries who champion an open society where every citizen finds their place. They ignite a fresh wave of possibility, fighting to ensure that all belong in this dynamic transformation.
Trans Europe Halles is a network for cultural activists. A place of learning and exchange. A Platform to campaign, advocate and raise awareness. An accumulator of collective knowledge and interdisciplinary expertise in fields such as cultural production, advocacy, city planning, sustainable architecture and circular design, energy efficiency, community engagement, fundraising, creative industries, policy, social innovation.
We generate connections that stimulate citizen independent initiatives. our network is a force of regeneration for neighbourhoods, communities, cities and regions.
We act as a counterweight against displacement, abandonment, gentrification, segregation and other urban plagues. We stand up for what we believe to be the very foundation of democracy: citizen engagement, decolonization, intercultural dialogue and freedom of expression.
Inward activities (member-focused)
- Creating connections and networking
- Training, learning and resource sharing
- Communication and promotion
- Emergency mobilization and support
- Advocacy and activism
- Interdisciplinary consultancy
- International cooperation
Trans Europe Halles (TEH) was born in March 1983 when Philippe Grombeer was involved in setting up an arts centre in the former covered market in Brussels – Halles de Schaerbeek. He reached out to a few similar initiatives in Europe for help and six other cultural pioneers – Huset (Copenhagen, Denmark); Kultur Fabrik (Koblenz, Germany); Melkweg (Amsterdam, The Netherlands); Ny Scen (Gothenburg, Sweden); Pali Kao (Paris, France); and Rote Fabrik (Zürich, Switzerland) – answered his call. They all met together in Brussels that year.
Together they embarked on a journey that hasn’t always been easy. Europe was going through a lot of changes at the time: the fall of the Berlin Wall, the signing of the Maastricht Treaty, the expansion of the EU. These changes left abandoned sites all over Europe. We took them over. We revived them and used them for artistic experimentation.
Back then our initiatives were often greeted with derision by governmental ministers and local and regional authorities. Yet, we didn’t give up. We fought side by side for our beliefs. Together we reclaimed more than 110 spaces in Europe. By the end of the twentieth century, the value of these neglected spaces had increased exponentially.
Today, we are an established European cultural network. Our potential has been recognised by the Creative Europe Programme, which has awarded us with a three-year network grant for the period of 2022-2024. Called “The Network Project” (TNP), this grant supports our core activities and has allowed us to restructure and consolidate our network, to decentralise certain of our activities to our hubs, who can answer more closely to the needs of our members where they are located, to equip them with new creative tools to face the challenges of today.
Over the last decades, we have led or joined a number of large scale international cooperation projects: Cultural and Creative Spaces and Cities (2018); DISCE – Developing Inclusive and Sustainable Creative Economies (2019), Rebuilding to last (2022), The Cultural Transformation Movement Project (2023), ZMINA/Rebuilding! (2023). These projects have raised our profile and established our position as a reference point for the sector.
What is next? We will continue expanding and growing stronger as a network. And we will work harder than ever to contribute to a more democratic, inclusive and pluralistic Europe.
We are a community with transparent, human-centred and democratic governance.
We make all our decisions together during our biannual meetings, we hold a formal General Assembly where we approve the budget, final accounts, network strategy or elect a Executive Committee. Every member has one vote, regardless of the size of the centre.
Our elected Executive Committee is our governing and policy-making body. It consists of a minimum of five and a maximum of eight people.
Our Ambassadors worked hard to make sure we survive and develop as a network. Today they are our advocates who promote us and our values to the outside world and inspire our members.
Annette Wolfsberger, The Netherlands
Antti Manninen, Finland
Birgitta Persson, Sweden
Cor Schlösser, The Netherlands
Emma Ernsth, Belgium
Erik Backer, The Netherlands
Fazette Bordage, France
Katarina Zivanovic, Serbia
Pekka Timonen, Finland
Sabina Schebrak, Austria
Sandy Fitzgerald, Ireland
Sigrid Niemer, Germany
Xavi Perez, Spain
Trans Europe Halles is co-funded by the Swedish Arts Council and the City of Lund, Sweden. Our projects The Network Project (TNP), Rebuilding to last (RTL), Cultural Transformation Movement Project (CTMP), ZMINA! Rebuilding, and AlterPlaces (AP) are funded by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union. The projects Spaces of Transformation in Arts Education (SPOTIng), Urban Regenerators Alliance (Eureka) and Train the Trainer are co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union. The project AP7 mapping value impacter is funded by the Horizon Programme of the European Union. The project The Good Enough Transformation (GET) is funded by the Nordik Kulturfond, The Balkan Hub project is funded by the Swedish Institute, The Region of Skåne, Sweden, funds the International Resource Office.
We grew. We developed. We improved. But we couldn’t have done any of our work without the support and encouragement of our partners. They believe that what we do matters.
TEH Coordination office until recently had been based at Mejeriet.
We are a member of Culture Action Europe, On the Move , IETM – international network for contemporary performing arts, PEARLE - LIVE PERFORMANCE EUROPE, The International Climate Heritage Alliance, and The European Heritage Alliance
Our Current Executive Committee
Ufafabrik, Berlin, Germany
Centrul Cultural PLAI, Timișoara, Romania
IZOLYATSIA. Platform for cultural initiatives, Kyiv, Ukraine
Malý Berlín, Slovakia
I work both on the internal and external structure of our network. I help co-develop together with our members and ExComm the future strategy of TEH and ensure it is implemented. I oversee our main activities and secure future collaborations and strategic partnerships. I am also involved in the daily work of the Coordination Office and manage its team, making sure our work benefits our members the most. Contact me for project proposals, advocacy, partnerships and services, or requests for talks and participation in advisory email@example.com
Director of Strategic Development
In my work I ensure that our partnerships and collaborations go in line with our main strategic axes and meet our members’ needs. My particular passion and focus is diversity, inclusion and SDGs and ensuring they are implemented in the daily work of the Coordination Office and our members. Contact me if you have a project proposal, collaboration idea or would like to join our Solidarity Actions. If you are an advocacy group working with inclusion, diversity, LGBTQI or SDGs, get in touch as we would be happy to work firstname.lastname@example.org
Finance and Admin Director
I am responsible for the administrative and financial management of the organisation and I advise on strategic and financial planning. I work with the Managing Director on the broader financial and administrative management and with Project Managers on projects financial management and reporting. Contact me for any exchanges needed on financial email@example.com
Marketing and Communications Director
I am in charge of developing our marketing and communications strategy that goes in line with our key priorities as a network. I make sure that we have a consistent and strong presence on all our communications channels and our brand is unique, distinctive and captures our spirit and drive. Plus, I develop tools and processes that help us run our daily communications smoothly and effectively. My main role is to envision a bigger picture, set goals for the future and ensure we keep staying relevant and impactful. Contact me if you have questions about our marcom strategy, would like to collaborate on a PR action or campaign, interested to become our media partner or have a relevant project to disseminate to our firstname.lastname@example.org
I run daily communications for Trans Europe Halles, both external and internal. I ensure implementation of our marketing and communications strategy, oversee brand consistency on all our communications channels; gather and analyse relevant data and work on the promotion of our main activities and events. Contact me if you have questions about our communications; need to update your information on our website or have an interesting and relevant project to disseminate to our email@example.com
I coordinate The Network Project (TNP) and make sure that our network activities, events and capacity-building programs run smoothly and meet the needs of our members. In addition, I co-produce TEH meetings with host centres that take place twice a year and bring 250+ cultural professionals from across Europe and beyond. Contact me if you have a question regarding TEH Meetings, Networking opportunities, TEH self-learning resources, evaluation and other TNP firstname.lastname@example.org
MEMBERS RELATIONS Part of my responsibilities includes ensuring a smooth working relationship/collaborations between TEH and its members, removing barriers and challenges that would otherwise hinder the effective collaboration between TEH member network. Get in touch with me if you would like to discuss how to become a member or if you are one, anything that TEH can do to serve you email@example.com
Senior Project Manager & Researcher
I manage the Cultural Transformation Movement project, a key strategic project for TEH, and coordinate the CTMP consortium, a working group of our members who are ambitious to reduce inequalities and inspire the European cultural sector. I am in charge of developing TEH’s relationship with the academic sector on social justice, spatial justice, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), and other topics relevant to underrepresented communities. Contact me with ideas on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), Cultural Transformation Movement project, social transformation and democracy-related firstname.lastname@example.org
I am currently filling in for Hanna Olsson while she’s on maternity leave – running the International Resource Office, coordinating the Arts Education Hub and the Youth Hub, as well as acting as the Coordination Office’s contact for the Nordic/Baltic members. Contact me if you are a cultural actor in Skåne looking for help to develop international projects and collaborations or have questions regarding any of the hubs email@example.com
Senior Project Manager
I manage the Rebuilding to Last project, which delivers research, capacity-building activities, and participatory architectural interventions to ensure a sustainable future for cultural spaces. Additionally, I am the contact person for two of TEH’s Hubs: the Sustainable Buildings Hub and the Balkans Hub. I am filling in for Roxana Apostol while she is on maternity leave. Contact me if you have ideas about environmentally friendly practices in the cultural sphere. This might be sharing knowledge about sustainable transformations, accessing finance, and involving communities in future-proofing physical firstname.lastname@example.org
Senior Project Manager
I coordinate The Network Project (TNP) and make sure that our network activities, events and capacity-building programs and advocacy activities run smoothly and meet the needs of our members. In addition, I co-produce TEH meetings with host centres that take place twice a year and bring 250+ cultural professionals from across Europe and beyond. Contact me if you have a question regarding TEH Meetings, Networking opportunities, TEH self-learning resources, evaluation and other TNP email@example.com
I manage the communication strategy and plan for the Cultural Transformation Movement Project and its consortium. This involves tasks like researching our audience, building a community around CTMP’s mission, creating relevant and effective content, and planning its distribution through various communication channels. I also provide support to the ZMINA project, where I help Ukrainian artists and cultural organisations gain visibility. Contact me if you have any expertise or suggestions on improving communication for social justice among underrepresented firstname.lastname@example.org
Admin & Logistics Secretary
The main purpose of my position is to support the directors and staff members of Trans Europe Halles. The administrative and logistical support that I provide includes but is not limited to: making travel arrangements, archiving documents, managing invoices, supporting team meetings, and maintaining the office and its supplies. Contact me if you have questions about reimbursements, invoicing and travel email@example.com
ESC Event Production Volunteer
I am involved in the production of TEH networking events. Those are yearly meetings, advocacy and city visits. I work on programme production, communications and logistics. Contact me if you have a question regarding TEH meetings and other firstname.lastname@example.org
Funders and Supporters
Everyone is welcome to attend our meetings. However, Camp Meetings (they take place in autumn) are more member-driven and raise questions that are primarily interesting within the network. Spring Conferences are more open and might be better suited for the general public. Yet, if you are interested in the topic of any of our meetings do not hesitate to register.
To apply as a full member of TEH, an organisation needs to meet certain criteria (see our membership page)
Full members are actively involved in the development of the network. They can vote during General Assemblies that take place twice a year at our meetings. They have more opportunities to participate in the events and trainings that we organise.
Organisations who are interested in TEH work but do not fulfill the full membership criteria can apply for associate membership.
Associate members have access to a large selection of resources and programs and can join the hubs (working groups) of Trans Europe Halles.
Benefits of a full membership are:
- Direct access to all the networking opportunities, programmes and resources offered by Trans Europe Halles
- Community of peers from 162+ organisations from 40+ countries across Europe and beyond that share their passion for buildings, social justice and arts and culture
- Possibility to shape the future of the network through voting rights or joining the Executive Committee – our governing body
- Advocacy for specific needs such as anti-eviction, urgent response to crisis and solidarity efforts within the network
- Funding opportunities, grant writing consultancy, and matchmaking for project partners
- Monthly internal newsletter
- Possibility to build or join international consortiums and take an active part in EU-funded projects
- Opportunity to join specialised working groups (HUBS) on specific topics or geographical areas
- Access to all TEH training and capacity building programs and mobility support opportunities
- Discounted prices for all TEH events
- Access to all publications and catalogues produced for over 40 years!
More information here
No, you are not. Yet, we encourage you to attend as often as you can. The more active you are, the more benefits you gain from being part of TEH family.
No, we are a non-governmental organisation, with an independent governance. However, we work closely with many local and European public institutions.