The Prince Claus Fund is connected to an expansive global network of artists, cultural organisations and critical thinkers.


When asked what the Fund's motto 'Culture is a Basic Need' means to them, we received the following responses from various project partners:

"Culture is intricately linked to social and political questions; like food, shelter, health and education, we have an absolutely essential need to make our individual cultural expressions seen and heard; culture thus is a question of our survival. Hence, it is our right to be able to make our own cultural expressions, without having to succumb to the powers of cultural hegemonies." – Bhowmik, Bangladesh and India

"It means that Culture makes people look at each other like humans and not like numbers, not like consumers, not like machine components."  – Shahnoza Karimbabaeva, Uzbekistan

"Culture is the only factor that is universal to all societies and it connects us as a universal language. It’s the secret element that connects us to great collective unconscious. I also believe that it is as essential to us as the other well-established basic physical needs."                – Shehzad Chowdhury, Bangladesh

"To me, culture is human. A strong, free, real human will create a strong, free, real culture."    – Nguyen Phuong Linh, Vietnam

"The human need to express is the root of creativity." – Karen Ocampo Flores, Philippines

"Culture is a basic need because as a shared experience a group of people, nation or civilization, it mirrors the memory, spirit, struggles and the aspirations of humanity."       – Liza Maza, the Philippines

"No society can function without culture. Hence, culture is a basic need, and practicing it should be a basic right."  – Yuki Poudyal, Nepal


people in the network

231 results

Bahia Shehab

Bahia Shehab

Bahia Shehab (1977, Egypt/Lebanon), graphic designer, artist, educator Bahia Shehab combines Islamic art history with contemporary Arab politics and feminist discourse in her art, activism and academic work. By tagging Cairo with calligraphy graffiti during the Arab Spring, creating artworks from reproduced ancient letters, and compiling the first Arabic script encyclopaedia,...

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PeaceNiche / The Second Floor  (T2F)

PeaceNiche / The Second Floor (T2F)

PeaceNiche | The Second Floor (T2F) (2007, Pakistan), interdisciplinary cultural centre PeaceNiche, a not-for-profit organisation founded by Sabeen Mahmud (1974-2015), is an interdisciplinary space that promotes democratic discourse and conflict resolution through intellectual and cultural engagement. Its flagship project T2F is one of the few community...

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Kamal Mouzawak

Kamal Mouzawak

Kamal Mouzawak (1969, Lebanon), chef and food activist Kamal Mouzawak is a chef and food activist passionate about sustainable food production and traditions and identity through cuisine and agriculture. Founder of Beirut’s first organic market and the cooperative restaurant, Tawlet (Table), Mouzawak draws on rural communities’ culinary knowledge while raising awareness...

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Apichatpong  Weerasethakul

Apichatpong Weerasethakul

Apichatpong Weerasethakul (1970, Thailand), filmmaker and artist Apichatpong Weerasethakul is an artist and a leader of Thailand’s independent cinema movement. His works subtly address complex social issues and personal politics through mesmerising aesthetics and innovative, non-linear narrative forms. He is also committed to promoting experimental and independent...

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Rakhshan  Bani-Etemad

Rakhshan Bani-Etemad

Rakhshan Bani-Etemad (1954, Tehran, Iran) was one of the first women to make films after the Iranian Revolution of 1979. She is now the foremost woman director in her country, enjoying both national and international renown. Bani-Etemad extends the boundaries of officially permitted imagination. Her work appeals to women in her own country and beyond, subtly researching and presenting womanhood and...

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