One of our very first adventures in this work was at Castle Borl in Slovenia. An ancient castle overlooking the Drava River, Borl is a “grail castle;” a thousand years ago, the Holy Grail was revered within its walls. Older still are towers within the towers — some of them originate as far back as 2,000 years ago.
The castle was the main site of IDRIART festivals, led by Slovenia’s Cultural Ambassador, Miha Pogacnik, who with volunteers like us hosted world leaders, artists, and everyday people to meet and participate in artistic and peace building activities. The festivals were conceived as part response to the war in Bosnia, part incubator of new initiatives. Many promising relationships, companies, organizations, partnerships, and agreements were forged and furthered at the castle during those years. Thousands of people visited from all over the globe.
One of our favorite moments realized the transformation of the dungeon, which was last used by the Nazis used during the second world war. It held only rubble and trash when we put a team together and asked them to come up with an idea. Within a week, they had created what today is a subterranean theater, complete with lighting and seating. What was particularly remarkable is that there was no common language to all the members of the group, so they were constantly drawing, translating, guessing, and figuring things out. The power of creativity!