30 euro: European Capital of Culture - Maribor 2012
Series: Slovenia: Silver 30 euro coins
Acting on the initiative of the artist Melina Mercouri, the Council of EU Ministers introduced the European Capital of Culture project in 1985. The primary objectives of the project are to highlight the richness of European culture, and to promote mutual understanding and a common European identity through awareness of the value of culture diversity. Two cities from EU Member States are designated European Capitals of Culture for a specific year according to a special procedure and criteria. During the year, the selected cities host cultural events aimed at strengthening European cooperation in the area of culture and promoting sustained dialogue throughout Europe. In May 2009 the EU Education, Youth and Culture Council designated Maribor and the Portuguese city of Guimaraes as European Capitals of Culture for 2012. The main objectives of the Slovenian project, European Capital of Culture – Maribor 2012, are to formulate an integrated approach to the sustained development of the East Cohesion Region, and to strengthen the local identity, cultural cooperation and international awareness of Slovenian culture and creativity. The primary focus in planning and implementing the project is on the specific features and characteristics of the areas surrounding Maribor and its partner cities of Murska Sobota, Novo mesto, Ptuj, Slovenj Gradec and Velenje. The content of the programme is based on four central themes: Terminal 12, Urban Furrows, Life Touch and Town Keys. The overall framework includes programme content for various target groups in Maribor and the aforementioned partner cities. Through the issue of collector coins, the Republic of Slovenia joins the promotion of Maribor and its partner cities as European Capital of Culture for 2012. The motif on the coins is a symbolic interpretation of the old Maribor bridge. In a figurative sense, it represents a link, communication and creativity, the essence of culture itself.