The Cordoba City of Culture Foundation was created on 7th June 2006, when its founding partners came together: Cordoba Town Hall, the Cordoba Provincial Government, Cordoba University and the Andalusian Regional Government (Junta de Andalucia), a formula which shows how all these institutions have joined forces to achieve the common goal of the European Cultural Capital in 2016. The Mayor of Cordoba, Andrés Ocaña, is president and Carlota Álvarez Basso has been in charge of the management office for the last few months. The main aim of the Foundation is, above all, to develop and promote all kinds of cultural activities in Cordoba and also to spread the creativity of Cordoba worldwide, with special attention to countries of the European Union. The Foundation has an Advisory Committee, in which a range of organizations and individuals from all walks of Cordoban life are involved, and whose mission is to continue the work undertaken since 2002 by the Municipal Office for the Cultural Capital Cordoba 2016.
The map of Cordoba is marked by the legacy of the various civilizations that have made their way through Europe - the Romans, the Muslims, the Jews and the Christians - like a huge palimpsest (those valuable papyri where you can read at the same time the original texts and the text written over it). Undoubtedly, in this role as a catalyst of different cultures, the location has been a great influence – being at the heart of Andalusia, being the capital of Roman Baetica and being the capital of the Umayyad Caliphate made it a focal point for a wide range of political, economic, cultural and religious interests.
It is precisely this unique historical heritage which raises the city to a unique status: Cordoba as a memorial and record of the history of Europe. For such a genuine reason, Cordoba’s candidature will stress multiculturalism and the dialogue between cultures as its fundamental concepts, and leading on from that, it will open the doors of Europe to other cultures such as Latin America, through the route of the Cordobas, and the Arabic and Jewish cultures, represented by what we have named the Route of the Umayyads.
To obtain the title of Capital of Culture, as well as having to have certain elements of cultural infrastructure such as an orchestra, museums, theatres, cultural, professional companies and art galleries, we must also have a credible and unanimous desire to land the title. To achieve this, we can count on the collaboration of the four most prominent public institutions in the city, which have enthusiastically supported the project by creating, three years ago, the Cordoba Cultural City Foundation, the ultimate expression of our agreement on this matter.
We would like to present Cordoba as a prism of essential, but at the same time, unique values. We must make a virtue out of singularity. It is not only our duty, but also our firm desire, to make the most of our splendid cultural patrimony, both in its tangible and intangible forms, approaching it from a position of respect and admiration.
We know that our candidature is the ideal way to rediscover the past and put our heritage in a new perspective, but we also recognize that it is important, not to say essential, to portray it in a new light, as well as to show all the latest trends.
Our common goal is to win for Cordoba the chance to be, for one year, the focal point of culture – and all its subsidiary areas - for all the citizens of Europe. From that moment on, we will have put Cordoba firmly back on the European cultural map.
Carlota Álvarez Basso
Cordoba Cultural City Foundation