I am Francesca, 29 years old and art historian.
Once graduated in Rome, I had to go back home in Puglia and start a new life, that one I hadn’t aspected to live.
October 2013: I flew to Berlin for some days. I really wanted to visit the city that I mentioned so much in my final bachelor project and I had never seen yet.
By living in San Severo, the little town just on the spur of the boot where I come from, I had to make my day. Back to live with my parents after 7 years away, I spent one year looking for a job, 12 hours a day. No results. At the end of each day I was understanding more and more that actually the job offer I was looking for didn’t exist at that time. At one point I decided to give birth to something I truly like and to do it by myself. This is something that I have never read about in books or studied in a classroom, so I had to start from zero. My project idea was to found an editorial and I didn’t have some kind of knowledge about managing a culture enterprise.
I launched a magazine, VAV, that I co-founded with a designer. After running the magazine for some months, I flew to Barcelona to meet Giuseppe, the other VAV co-founder. Here, in one night spending great time with young people coming from all over the Europe, a guy told me about the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs. Eureka! I was looking for an experience to understand practically how a cultural manager works and how an enterprise that offers cultural services could create incomes to invest in its own future. The day after that meeting I googled the European Program and immediately got in touch with the Intermediary Organization closest to my little town.
September 2015: I am in Berlin working at Bpigs Berlin Independents Guide to finally understand and learn all the things I missed. Thanks to the EYE progamme I am part of the Bpigs team for a three-months period up to November and I am working daily with the editorial staff. Lisa Kosak is managing editor at Bpigs and she is my mentor. First she explained to me how they manage sponsorships and media partnerships with the aim to produce the printed issue every two months, then she showed me the data system they built for a few years to create a solid community around the services offered by Bpigs magazine.
When I arrived to Berlin and started to work with them, the September/October issue was already out. As Bpigs is an independent run project, they usually have direct contact with clients and users, also during the delivering phase of each issue launch. This issue theme was the Berlin Art Week, the main event about art in Berlin during a year. From September 15th to 20th, museums, private galleries and project spaces joined together an intensive program of widespread shows, art fairs, conferences and meetings. Bpigs mapped the Art Week and published a free press to deliver in each Berlin art space. Our daily activities during the Art Week were going to press conferences, openings and art fairs and reporting everything once back to the office. One of the main difficulties of the week was to coordinate the on-line work with the off-line activities being a small team. We did it, and I am learning how to manage a team and to achieve the objectives week after week.
Before joining Bpigs editorial, the big questions for me were the following:
- how an independent magazine can afford the production costs of a free press?
- what kind of marketing solutions they use?
Now they are helping me to know more about.
Bpigs is run in English and almost all of the members come from different countries of Europe. So another skill I am improving while working at Bpigs is my English language fluency because we periodically publish on-line contents and Lisa helps me often with that. This aspect of working there is quite important, and now I am seriously considering to make my own enterprise more international.
The Berlin Art Week just ended and I am looking forward to see what we are going to do at Bpigs during the next weeks!