Art works, creative cooperation with artists and engagement in art projects can challenge and inform how we think about justice. Restorative justice in itself is an innovative way of responding to harm and dealing with conflicts, which offers an alternative to the established and mainstream justice processes. Arts can offer an insight into something that may be unfamiliar, and help to explore it in a tangible way. That is why the EFRJ enjoys to engage in different collaborations that involve arts, and gives space to art works that discuss topics related to restorative justice and its fundamental values.
The EFRJ’s commitment to bring together restorative justice professionals and artists to share their experiences and work has a long history, if we look at the many awareness campaigns (such as the International Restorative Justice Weeks) and events (such as conferences and summer schools) that included arts in the programmes. Also, the EFRJ published the little book “Restorative Imagination: Artistic Pathways. Ideas and experiences at the intersection between art and restorative justice” (edited by Emanuela Biffi & Brunilda Pali, 2017) to gather reflections, creative projects and actual artworks on restorative justice.
On this page you will find a collection of different art related initiatives that we have been involved in.
Under the term REstART, the European Forum for Restorative Justice (EFRJ) organises a series of initiatives dedicated to the arts of justice, solidarity and repair. The 1st REstART event has been the online art festival organised to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the EFRJ (30 November – 5 December 2020). Based on this successful experience, each year, around 8 December (the actual “birthday” of the organisation), the EFRJ will organise an online gathering (e.g. a discussion over a new film or theatre play, or an interactive dialogue between different professionals) and every 5 years, to celebrate its “big birthdays”, the EFRJ will organise a live art festival, in Leuven or in another hosting city in Europe (the next one will be in December 2025, save the date!).
REstART wishes to be the platform for professional exchanges between different experts and groups working in the fields of arts and/or restorative justice, such as:
- artists whose artworks share stories of restorative justice encounters, or reflections about the potential of more human approaches to justice;
- artists using participatory methodologies for creating performances or other artworks in collaboration with opposing groups or with marginalised communities;
- restorative justice practitioners adopting creative and innovative methodologies to support conflicting parties in (non-verbal) communication processes;
- academics, criminal justice professionals, activists, students and others interested in the intersections between arts and justice.
This booklet was published by the European Forum for restorative Justice for celebrating the international Restorative Justice Week 2017, is a collection of articles written by researchers, practitioners, artists, activists, dreamers interested and/or working on the intersections between arts and restorative justice.