EMPACT-NATFA Artistic Residency “Water: мemory & мovement” In cooperation with the Apollonia Festival of the Arts!

26 August – 6 September 2023 | Sozopol, Bulgaria

We are pleased to announce that the EMPACT 12-day Artistic Residency of the National Academy of Theatre and Film Arts “Kr.Sarafov” (NATFA) on the theme of “Water: Memory & Movement”, in cooperation with the Apollonia Festival of the Arts is about to begin! 


EMPACT residencies aim to facilitate artists in creating, through sustainable practices, art that fosters an empathic stance towards non-human beings and nature; that is, art that encourages people to relate to non-human beings as well and thus acquire experiential knowledge about issues related to climate change. “EMPACT: Empathy and Impact: The art of thinking like a mountain” project considers the artist’s own emotional and empathic stance as a key point that will allow them to effectively incorporate the concept of sustainability and empathy in their artistic production.

Artistic residencies as part of EMPACT project will happen in four European placesNature, Art & Habitat Residency (NAHR) – Italy; Vorres Museum – Greece,  Espacio Rojo – Spain and NATFA – Bulgaria. The international jury selected 14 artists who will take part in these four residencies in the summer and autumn of 2023.


NATFA’s residency (26 August – 6 September 2023) will be held in the city of Sozopol, Bulgaria at the Black Sea.

Sozopol is one of the oldest cities on the Bulgarian Black Sea coast. The impressive architecture and archaeology, old pretty wooden houses in the Old City, traces of ancient civilizations, diverse cultural and artistic programs, romantic atmosphere, beautiful sea cost and nature, are a great source of creativity.


Three artists are selected for the NATFA residency in Sozopol between 26 August – 6 September 2023 – Dimitris Savva, Cyprus; Andrea Davanzati and Giulia Pellegrini, Italy. They will have the opportunity to explore the meaning, movement and structure of water, the ecological transformations of nature as a result of these processes, and the social impact on the environment, as well as the importance of empathy as a key to assist the global concern.   

Dimitris Savva is a composer and sound artist with expertise in electroacoustic, electronic, soundscape and multimedia music composition and sound design. Experienced educator with expertise in composition, sound art, music technology, soundscape theory, acoustic ecology and electroacoustic music history and composition.

Andrea Davanzati developed his earliest studies with Bruno Munari, Carlo Mo, Kengiro Azuma and Giancarlo Marchese. His research focuses more on stainless steel sculpture and his studies are directed toward the analysis of natural structures, often in motion, applied in small sculptures as well as in large public structures. In addition to his activity as a sculptor and architect, he continues his profession as a university lecturer. His studies on insect forms have produced a unique series of micro sculptures in silver called “larvae.”

Giulia Pellegrini is an Italian artist who has decided to turn her attention to environmental issues to generate a new sensitivity towards our planet. She focused her research on the creation of works that allow the public to learn about the problem, not only from a conceptual point of view but also through their bodies and their direct participation in the artworks. 


During their stay, residents will have the opportunity to explore the cultural heritage of Sozopol, to get inspired by the beauty of the sea, rivers and mountains in the surrounding areas, and to get to know the local artistic communities and the local lifestyle. Residents will also have the opportunity to visit the Apollonia Festival’s events of their choice free of charge.

We expect the residents to create a performative story, focusing on artists’ own resilience and sustainability, and combining traditional with innovative ideas and materials.

At the end of their residency, artists will present their projects to the local community. Anyone who would like to visit NATFA-EMPACT Artistic Residency “Water: Memory & Movement” Sozopol is warmly welcome!


The international jury chose two Bulgarian artists to participate in the creative residencies of the partner organizations under the EMPACT project:

Miryan Kolev will join the artistic residency in NAHR, Italy. He is a musician, composer and multidisciplinary artist who works in the experimental, electroacoustic, ambient, improvisational music sphere and sound art. He also develops collaborative projects and performances with other musicians, visual artists, dancers, performers and composes music for art installations, videos and dance performances.

Venelin Shurelov will join the artistic residency in Vorres Museum, Greece. He is a cross-media artist – нis projects are multifaceted and include drawings, interactive installation and performance, digital technologies, video and art theory.

His works can be found on the following links:

If you are passionate about socio-environmental sustainability, empathy and the role of the arts, here is the NATFA-EMPACT project website for further information:  

Join EMPACT social media and keep updated about empathy and sustainability through the arts: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube.

Co-funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Education and Culture Executive Agency (EACEA). Neither the European Union nor EACEA can be held responsible for them.

The project is implemented with the financial support of the National Culture Fund, Bulgaria