A boundary is an imaginary, dividing line. For example, a political boundary, but it can also be a figurative, more abstract boundary. It can be very annoying to bump into borders and sometimes it is just as well that someone bumps into such a border. A border is there for a reason. 

Within the boundaries you know what is possible, what is possible and what is allowed and you have freedom of movement. Outside those boundaries things become more complicated; what are the rules, how far can you go? Crossing borders almost always results in conflict at all levels. The rules outside the boundaries deviate from the rules we know or expect. Acting then is no longer about what we know, understand and automatically do or don't do, but about gathering knowledge, being curious, looking around, listening and respecting the rules that apply outside your boundaries. Difficult, because it is not always obvious. Boundaries that are new can seem unclear and are misinterpreted. And that is where things go wrong: between powers, countries, peoples, people and animals. 

Crossing boundaries almost always and at all levels produces conflict

If we look close to home, at the boundaries between people, a number of rules of behavior have recently become increasingly clear, new boundaries require acknowledgement. That is a change and like any change in a society, it comes with tensions. Think of the #metoo movement, all the outpourings that followed it and the reactions to it. The Black Lives Matter movement is also about recognizing boundaries. Thanks in part to these movements, there is a recalibration of values and norms, frames of reference and sensitivity. This is not easy, but it is good and important to think about new boundaries, or rather, boundaries that are more precisely and clearly defined. What follows is a shift in the area of respecting of boundaries that people place on their physical and mental integrity. This includes all people and, in particular, to people who are part of one or more "groups" such as people of color, lhbtiq+ people, the practically educated, newcomers, the elderly, women, the physically or mentally disabled, et cetera. 

It is right and important to think about new boundaries, or rather, boundaries that are more precisely and clearly defined

A border is never static. At the border - on the boundary - a game of explore, challenge, defend and preserve takes place. Often in a nice, friendly way, but regularly in an aggressive way. We all know the examples of the latter. Of the nice way too. There is a group of professionals within which many have the gift of challenging boundaries in a nice way or raise the issue: artists, makers. Stretching boundaries, tightening them, questioning them, affirming them, taking them under fire, offering alternatives, making them visible, bringing them to attention, naming them, showing them, criticizing them, commenting on them, insightful; this makes the profession of autonomous artist, in all its manifestations, one of the most important in the world. What unfortunately cannot prevent is that there are also artists who cross boundaries. There are more than enough examples of this too. 

On June 21, the report Across the Border, an opinion of the Council for Culture on transgressive behavior in the cultural and creative sector. See also ...

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