Groups of people that wanted to show alternative to omnipresent injustice of existing economic system, gathered in Parco Santa Chiara, Trento Italy, from 29th of May to 2nd of June 2019. Festival “Beyond Economy” was organized for the 6th time as a parallel to the festival of Economia, that took place in the same town. It was an extremely joyous occasion filled with activists and enthusiasts that offered their free time to show what they believe in.
East, West, South, North - Only clothes
Malik is a tailor from Gambia, Africa where he studied his craftsmanship. His father is from Senegal, brother carpenter at the moment in Switzerland going through divorce after 15 years of living abroad. When Malik came to Italy he was volunteering for 2 years designing and making clothes. He was receiving some amount of money and after he accumulated enough to start his own part of the business, he went for it. The association is called social tailors ( Officina de l’ucia – Centro astalli Trento) and at the moment he works with Salim, bag maker, and Franka, an Italian women talking to customers and making belts and bags out of recycled materials on the side. Go figure.
Right next to Franka and social tailors there was Amina, girl surrounded with activist signs, hoodies and stickers in a name of Italian feminist group Non Una Di Meno (“Not One Less”). This branch of an Argentinian feminist group was founded last year in Trento and immediately organized 8th March strike, participated in 30th March – March for women rights in Verona and proceeded collecting money for their movement. Why? Because women freedoms and rights are being violently broken all over the world.
At the same time Martina lost her job, decided she doesn’t want to work in hospitality and change bed sheets in hotels. Instead, she started painting, ironing and carving wood. She finished marketing and economy but the world of paint was stronger than certainty of numbers so she organized her first selling exhibition on OEF. If this takes off, she will never work a day in her life. Only paint and wolves on her road.
Groups of volunteers
It is evident by now that the festival of Beyond Economy is organized and lead by volunteers. They were selling food, drinks, digital currencies and books. Associazione Charisma had the biggest tent with abundance of publications. The book store ordered selected titles and is going to take back all the books that don’t get sold during the festival. Pretty non-capitalistic, I would say. Titles included migration, refugees, human rights, feminism, spiritualism and other bunch of activism. Depending on the title, certain percentage of sales goes to the festival. Read books, give life to the festival!
People and stories in this text are just a small part of enthusiasts participating in the event and making the festival as fun, funny and serious as it was. Volunteering enthusiasm was in the air. One of the most hardworking and omnipresent was Valentina Merlo that spend 2 months working 20 hours a day to make it all happen. She is not sure if next year will be possible for her to do this again. I am sure she will come up with something. With that being said, when we look back at the state of Trento during the weekend festivals of economics there is one thing both festivals have in common – division. There is a great divide between the visitors of those two festivals. But why? We are all human beings trying to find the most comfortable way to live and let live on this earth until it is our time to leave it to our descendants. To say it with words of a movie character that made some major point: “Why can’t we all just get along?”