With the motto “Another Europe, Transformed by Shepherds” this event organized by the Spanish artist Fernando García-Dory gathers sheep herders and farmers from several European countries in order to work towards the creation of a European Shepherds Network, an organization that would give this community a voice and make it visible. The assembly discusses the issues of contemporary pastoralism, the actions of shepherds and their relation to public opinion and to their animals, and includes the screening of a documentary recounting the journey of German shepherds from Berlin and Brussels to Trier. However, the assembly hopes to go beyond discussion to take a real step forward in the action plan of the European Shepherds Network.
A Shepherd Assembly is a living part of The Worldly House. An Archive Inspired by Donna Haraway's Writings on Multi-Species Co-Evolution compiled and presented by Tue Greenfort.
Javier Colmenarejo is a goat keeper and artisan cheesemaker from San Mames, a small village in the Madrid Mountain Range. He has been very active at local and national level and was recently appointed Vice-President of the Spanish Federation of Shepherds, a grassroots organization created in 2008 bringing together about 15 different groups from all over the country.
Günther Czerkus is a sheep herder from Wallendorf, Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany, and spokesman of the German Sheep Breeders Association. He has been active in different struggles defending shepherds’ future, such as the Hirtenzug 2010. He hosted the first European Shepherds Meeting and contributed to the first attempt to create a Eureopean Shepherds Network in Ober-Ramstadt in 2009 with the support of the League for Pastoral Peoples.
Alvaro Martin runs a cooperative of young people living from sheep and goat herding in Central Spain mountains.
Fernando García-Dory is an artist and agroecologist living between Madrid, Berlin, and the northern Spanish mountains. His work proposes a neo-pastoral genre as a way to reflect social challenges, positions and cultural strategies for a transition to sustainable models.
Nora Kravis is a cashmere goat keeper from Tuscany in Italy. She is involved in a global initiative to improve wool fabric production under a framework developed by IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) and IFAD (International Fund for Agricultural Development), recently sharing her knowledge in Kyrgyzstan.
Norman Leask is a sheep herder from Shetland, UK, and parliamentary spokesman of the Scottish Crofting Federation, an organization involved in the development of a crofting legislation in Scotland and defending local seeds and breeds over genetically modified (GM) seeds. He also represents the UK within Vía Campesina, the international peasant movement.
A sheep farmer from Echt, Limburg, Netherlands, Erich Röse is spokesman of the National Working Group of Professional Sheep Farmers in the Netherlands. He organized the foundational European Shepherds Gathering in 2011.