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Nemoland Poland - Międzylesie (Ramberg) 5 - 58-512 Stara Kamienica - tel. (48) 75-7693605 – email - www.nemoland.org  Map  Map region
Navigation: Google Maps type "Nemoland Polen”  - GPS location: 50° 53.857', 15° 31.857. Altitude 520m

Pictures  Fotoalbum Nemoland  Pictures Nemoland 2013  Pictures Nemoland 2014  Pictures Nemoland now
More information about Nemoland, projects and Stara Kamienica (pdf-file)
All information about the Pol Skal mining plans in Stara Kamienica near Nemoland
Internship and research reports

- History of the region
- The secrets of Nemoland: becoming nemo and travel to the legends

- New website about Nemoland
- Films about Nemoland, the mining plans and the Polish region

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* OFFER 2018 FOR VOLUNTEERSSTUDENTS SCOUTS 
-   HISTORY PROJECT 'KAMIENICA'

EARTH CENTER NEMOLAND POLAND

free space to connect people and earth

Welcome in Nemoland!
We invite you to contribute your energy and enthusiasm to building a community that sees the earth as a source of inspiration.


In 1997 the Dutch grassroots nature association Nemo founded Nemoland as a non-profit cooperative and autonomous zone to live with what nature and the Polish village Stara Kamienica has to offer.

Where
Nemoland, meaning ‘no man’s land’, is situated in the heart of Europe, between Prague, Dresden and Wroclaw, in the Sudety area of Polish Lower Silesia. It is hidden between Isermountains (Góry Izerskie), Giant Mountains (Karkonosze) and the Bóbr Valley Landscape Park (Park Doliny Bobru). Because of the turbulent history this border land in the centre of Europe became a no man’s land, where time lost its forward direction, went back and unveiled hidden memories. This uniquely beautiful mountain area provides a micro-climate, with an extreme variety of elements, quick changing weather types and characteristic seasons.

Why

Reconnecting with the earth: walking and working in nature, learning, reflecting, celebrating ecology, history and legends of the landscape, getting to know the Polish village, its inhabitants and customs. These are the tools to explore the energy and gifts of the earth, to re-create and re-invent yourself but also to protect it from mining plans and other threats to nature, landscape and local community.

What

At Nemoland we welcome visitors, volunteers and partners who want to share their capacities and talents within the cooperative, based on the concept that the process is much more important than the product. In 2017 Nemoland will be re-opened with a new concept, a new logo and new activities under the name “Back2earth”. The program is aiming at involving all nationalities, traditions, minorities and ages. Being a bridge between Eastern and Western Europe, Nemoland invites international NGO’s, students, youth and disability organizations to participate in the Nemoland-project.

Program ‘Back2earth’ 2017/2018
- Eco farm activities: gardening, cutting wood, keeping animals and making natural products
- building huts
- recovery of historical landscape, restoration of footpaths and bridges and development of a walking network for the village
- educational exchange with village organizations and local schools
- organization of a village festival
- production of a film about local history and legends
- art and handicrafts workshops: wood sculpting, weaving
- storytelling
- personal development workshops and activities
- survival camps, bushcraft workshops and vision quests
- 'roots’: workshop/research for new meanings
building an oloroon: a 4D art construction
- for children: bushcraft, swimming in the creek, building huts, storytelling program, rock climbing


We Offer
- 34 ha remote nature reserve around the Ramberg and the Kamienica river, with absolute silence and darkness
- walking and hiking routes all over the region
- small Eco farm with vegetable gardens, orchard, meadows, animals
- place to stay, work and live in a natural environment with modest and ecological facilities (natural camping places, dormitories, rooms, huts, small campers, sanitary, kitchens) for groups and individuals
- facilities for activities: theatre, fire places, atelier for felting/weaving, legend hall, library, studio for yoga and meditation, Africa workshop
- workshop space for local eco-products and handicrafts
- youth programs for internships and volunteer camps
- exchange projects for NGO’s, creative groups, choirs, schools


NEMOLAND COOPERATIVE IS LOOKING FOR NEW PARTNERS

The Nemo Association wants to strengthen the Nemoland Cooperative giving opportunities to new partners within the concepts of Nemo, focused on:
- Agrarian development; gardening, animals, natural products
- Education, coaching or DIY-projects
- Handicrafts and art (installations, theatre, music, film)
- Eco/agro/village-tourism
- Events and festivals
- Intercultural exchange

More about Nemoland

Organization

Nemo was founded in 1988 in the Netherlands as a non-profit association for walkers and walking interests. Soon it became a broader association for nature related activities. The association, financed by its members, is independent of any government, fund, company or NGO. It has two locations: Nemoland Westerpark in Amsterdam and Nemoland Poland in Stara Kamienica in the Lower Silesia region in Poland. For the administration of Polish Nemoland, in 1997 Nemo founded a separate Polish organization: Fundacja Nemo.

- Since 1997 Nemo brought more than 3100 foreign people to Stara Kamienica to learn and taste the Polish village life and build Nemoland.
- More than 100 students from Dutch colleges and universities followed internships, workshops, and did research on sustainable and ecological development.
- In 2003 Nemo received a subsidy (Matra) from the Dutch government to support Polish village associations and to strengthen the local community.
- Twelve times over the course of its existence, Nemo has organized the ‘Dutch Day’ in Stara Kamienica to exchange Dutch and Polish culture.
Since 2009 Nemo has organized three Crossroads Festivals in Jelenia Góra, as a cultural event focused on cross border art.


Meanwhile Nemo has been collecting stories and legends of the former German and present Polish inhabitants, because we feel that oral memories are much more real than official history. The area of Stara Kamienica in particular, is a book of unknown stories. We see the simple and easily accessible activity of walking as a way of discovering, touching and reading these stories.

For the staff of Nemo their ‘Polish adventure’ in Stara Kamienica has been a long and often challenging process of ‘trial-and-error’. They have put a lot of effort into learning Polish language, history, customs and even cooking. From 2003 Nemoland faced a threat of total destruction by the Pol Skal mining plans in Mala Kamienica, just opposite their front-door, and plans for Uranium mines in nearby Kopaniec. Where national mining corporations saw potential financial profit, they, living and working as foreigners in Poland, and thus as outsiders, saw something much more precious: an “open mine” not of stones but of captivating stories and legends of Polish village life and its many visitors. After 20 years of their own metaphorical mining, the Nemo-workers want to show what they have found! That is why Nemoland will be re-opened in 2017 with a new concept, a new logo and new activities. Nemo welcomes groups, institutes, NGO’s and individuals, offering a clear structure within the Polish Nemo Foundation, with lots of possibilities to set up independent and common activities and projects. Target groups could be locals, international youth, students, disabled, refugees, volunteers, active tourists/families.

The region

The region of Nemoland received, contrary to the Giant Mountains, little attention from tourists and historians, even though the traces of the oldest glassworks, pagan worship places, the most beautiful half-timbered weaver houses and many natural and agricultural monuments are located here. Nowhere else is in immediate reach such a rich variety of nature, culture and landscape. The special features of this region are traces of early cultivation (such as stone walls, terraces, mill brooks, fords and paths), which are mostly still intact. The richness of nature is unique. Plants that are already extinct in Western Europe, are still to be found here. Once the area was known as a big landscape park, the "Toscane of Middle Europe". After the war the area became a ‘lost land’, because the people who lived there and the people who came to live there both lost their native land, while the landscape lost its names, monuments and memory. Like many other border regions in Europe, this area runs into danger due to lack of care and the threat of devastating mining projects. Protests against the mining plans made local inhabitants much more aware of their cultural and natural heritage. This resulted in all kinds of initiatives to protect nature and the historical value of the landscape, the value of community-building, and of local economy.

Philosophy

The philosophy of Nemo is that members, volunteers and guests contribute something of themselves to Nemoland. Thus Nemoland is created in an organic way and is developed by involvement of visitors who are invited to be more participants than consumers. The idea is to establish a creative exchange where those who come to participate in an ongoing creation of Nemoland, are in turn given an opportunity to re-create themselves by exploring the secrets of the Polish countryside, and ultimately promoting sustainable development of the region.

The philosophy of Nemo is not based on any current religion or a political, ecological or spiritual ideology. Nemo means nobody and its philosophy offers a way to get rid of ideology and become ‘nobody’, an empty slate. Wanting to be “a somebody”, or being ruled by too much ‘ego’ might be the cause of most modern time diseases. Going back to earth: walking/working in nature, living with what nature and the nearby village offers, participating in stories and legends, fighting the threats to nature, landscape and local community. All this requires losing ‘ego’ and entering a symbiosis with the earth. That is why Nemoland has no hierarchy and central ideology, but is changing all the time by the energy and input of participants.


Sources of inspiration


People
The main source of inspiration for Nemo during 20 years pioneering in Poland, have been Polish people, hereby:
- the neighbours in Chromiec, Antoniów and Mala Kamienica; especially the babcia’s, the always friendly and welcoming grandmothers with their touching stories
- the (power) women of the village, providing meals, making bread, pierogi, powidla, cakes and other Polish delights for foreigners; also providing generous advice about gardening, animals, handicrafts and household
- the colourful streetpeople hanging around, selling mushrooms and berries, always greeting and engaging in conversations
- the village shopkeepers - heart and communication centre of the village. Without the “sklep” (shop) the village would die.
- the villagers protesting against devastating mining plans and succeeding in stopping the threats
- the young (again female) activists and community builders of the swietlica (village centre)
- the (female) mayor of Stara Kamienica, always cooperative and communicative
- the coordinator for cultural activities in Stara Kamienica, stimulating and supporting
- the friendly village priest
- English/German teachers and coordinator of foreign affairs of Karkonosze College; making doors wide open for foreigners
- The German ‘Vertriebenen’ (refugees), born in our village, coming back every year to reconnect with their youth memories. They are crucial sources for information about the region in German times.
- The German “Heimatforscher”, historians who want to share their knowledge with Polish people, creating concepts of “common history”, instead of separated German and Polish history.

Writers

Along the very practical and simple ways of reconnecting with the earth, there are many philosophical sources from which Nemo draws inspiration and energy. The conditions and facilities of Nemoland function as a creative lab to uncover and drink from these sources. For example:

Bruno Schulz (1892-1942)

Republika marzeń (The Republic of dreams 1936): “He proclaimed a republic of dreams, the sovereign territory of poetry. On a few tracts of land, on the canvas of a landscape cast into the midst of forests, he declared the indivisible reign of fantasy. He demarcated it, laid the foundations of a stronghold, and transformed the region into one enormous rose garden — guest rooms, cells set aside for solitary contemplation, refectories, dormitories and libraries… secluded pavilions in the midst of parks, summerhouses, belvederes…”


Wiesław Myśliwski (1932)
2006 Traktat o łuskaniu fasoli (A Treatise on Shelling Beans)

Polish literature is the best source to understand (and enjoy!) Polish background, history, and village community. Writers like Myśliwski, Tokarczuk and Stasiuk are revealing these stories about ‘simple people’ by their fantastic way of writing.  For Myśliwski ‘shelling beans’ is a metaphor for a simple activity (like walking) when time & space go back (instead of forward) to the dreamtime, to hidden memories of trauma and youth.

Frederik van Eeden (1860-1932)

Frederik van Eeden established in 1898 a commune named Walden, taking inspiration from Thoreau's book Walden, in Bussum, North Holland, where the residents tried to produce as much of their needs as they could themselves and to share everything in common, and where he took up a standard of living far below what he was used to. Van Eeden was founder of a movement for common land property (GGB), meant as an alternative to socialism and anarchism, in order to fight capitalism by setting up ‘back-to-the-land’ and peasant communes. World War I became the end of the movement, but in the Sixties his ideas were revealed and became inspiration for artist and eco-communes up till present days.

Laozi (604-507 BC)

Laozi was an ancient Chinese philosopher, known as the reputed author of the Tao Te Ching and supposed to be the founder of Taoism.
“We join spokes together in a wheel,
but it is the center hole
that makes the wagon move.
We shape clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside
that holds whatever we want.
We hammer wood for a house,
but it is the inner space
that makes it liveable.
We work with being,
but non-being is what we use.”

Jacques Lacan (1901-1981)

Lacan was a French postmodern psychoanalyst who developed a topological model to understand and define human life and history. The model is consisting of three connected circles known as Borromean Circles. This diagram became the logo of Nemoland.  Each circle should be able to connect the other two, and if one circle is breaking, all circles are loosened. In modern logic the three connected circles are used to understand and define triple relations. They are used already by Indians, Celts and Normans to define the three main aspects of life. The early Christians used the three connected circles to explain the mystery of the Holy Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Based on this history and the philosophy of Freud, Jacques Lacan used the three circles as symbol for:
1. "the real" (nature, Chaos, the Freudian ‘Es’)
2. "the symbolic" (culture, the Other, the Law, the Freudian ‘Über-ich’)
3. "the fantasy" (body-image, imagination, the Freudian ‘Ich’)

Broken rings have dramatic consequences. Culture’s brake from nature and imagination lead to destruction of nature. Imagination’s brake from language and nature leads to borderline and neurosis. And nature’s brake from language and imagination leads to chaos and psychosis.
A fourth ring, called ‘the Sinthome’ offers a cure to restore the broken links. The fourth ring is a new language, coming out of ‘nothing’ (no man’s land, the black spot in between rings). The Sinthome is dominated by ‘the real’, instead of the Other. It is a way to enjoy language and body in a personal way, integrating language, nature and fantasy.

Gilles Deleuze (1925-1995)

Influential French philosopher, writing on philosophy, literature, film, and fine art. In his A Thousand Plateaus (1987), co-written with psychoanalyst Félix Guattari, the parts about Rhizome and Nomadology are most inspiring as a plea for ‘becoming’, a free space ‘in between’, contrary to the organization plans and machines of the Matrix.

Meister Eckhart (1260 -1328)

German theologian, philosopher and mystic, mixing Neoplatonic and feminist theology to new concepts in daily life language. For him it was essential to reach the essence of life or ‘goddess’ by ‘becoming nobody’, leaving all concepts and fantasies: “So, when I am able to establish myself in nothing, and nothing in myself, uprooting and casting out what is in me, then I can pass into the naked being of God, which is the naked being of the Spirit.”

Andrei Tarkovsky (1932-1986)

Russian filmmaker Stalker (1979). His work is characterized by long takes, unconventional dramatic structure, distinctly authored use of cinematography, and spiritual and metaphysical themes. It depicts an expedition led by a figure known as the "Stalker" (Aleksandr Kaidanovsky) to take his two clients, a melancholic writer (Anatoli Solonitsyn) seeking inspiration and a professor (Nikolai Grinko) seeking scientific discovery, to a site known simply as the "Zone", which has a place within it with the supposed ability to fulfill a person's innermost desires. Zone as a space in which humans can live without the trappings of society and can speak about the most important things freely. While it seems the Room fulfills all the wishes of a visitor, this creates a serious problem given that these might not be consciously expressed wishes but the true unconscious desires of those that come in. In addition it appears that the Zone itself has a kind of sentience.

Nemoland offers free time & space and facilities to children and youth (of any age) for a better world, going back to earth. Without ideology, but hands in the mud…

 

Picture: cleaning a river. Nemoland summer 2016

 

Program for landscape protection
By offering facilities we would like you to participate in our current ecological project. The protection of the landscape and contribution to the ecological farming are core activities of Nemoland Poland. Currently we take part in the project of Rural Development Program for the years 2014 – 2020 (RDP 2014-2020), which is realized under the auspice of the Agency for Restructuring and Modernisation of Agriculture (ARMA) (http://www.arimr.gov.pl/o-arimr/information-about-the-agency.html). It has been prepared under the provisions of the European Union, in particular the European Parliament and of the Council (EU) No 1305/2013 of 17 December 2013. As a part of EU's growth strategy "Europe 2020 – A strategy for smart, sustainable and inclusive growth" the development needs of the Member States are considered.

How to get to Nemoland?

Navigation
Google Maps type "Nemoland Polen"
GPS location: 50° 53.857', 15° 31.857

1.            By car

a.    From Görlitz: cross the border to Zgorzelec and follow the signs to Jelenia Góra. After passing Luban and Gryfów, 13 km before Jelenia Góra after the village Pasiecznik, turn left to Stara Kamienica. Follow the right side of the river, passing Stara Kamienica. In Kromnów turn right to Kopaniec and at crossing turn right again to Chromiec. Just before Chromiec turn right to Nemoland.

b.    From Jelenia Góra: take the route Jelenia Góra - Szklarszka Poreba. After you passed Wojcieszyce turn right in the village of Piastów to the direction of Stara Kamienica/Barcinek. Then pass Piastów, and then on the crossroad turn left. Passing Kromnów Wola and Kopaniec, go straight to Chromiec. Just before the first sign of Chromiec there is at the right side a green sign of Nemo. Follow the road till the split and then take the right path, slightly uphill. In 200 meters and you are at the destination.

2.            By bus

a.    From outside Poland to Wroclaw by Eurotrans http://www.eurotrans.nl/ Take the regular train to Stara Kamienica or bus to Jelenia Góra.

b.    From Jelenia Góra by Roko bus http://ro-ko.pl/jelenia-gora-chromiec/ and http://ro-ko.pl/jelenia-gora-antoniow/ goes from the bus station on Podwale in Jelenia Góra to Chromiec. Chromiec is the final stop on the bus. In Chromiec, you should go along the road towards Kopaniec. After the last house in Chromiec, you have to turn left. There will be a wooden sign NEMO. Continue to go straight all the time till the road splits. Take the right path, slightly uphill. In 200 meters and you are at the destination.  Distance from the bus stop in the center of Chromiec to Nemo: about 2.5 km.

3.            By train www.bahn.de cheap ticket to Görlitz. From there local train to Stara Kamienica.

4.            Carpooling by www.blablacar.nl  www.hitchhikers.org  www.carpooling.com  www.carpool.be

5.            By plane. Cheapest fights to Wroclaw by WizzAir http://wizzair.com/ There is a busservice from Wroclaw Airport to Nemoland: 1. Town bus from Airport to central bus station. 2 Bus from bus station to Jelenia Góra. 3 From Jelenia to Nemoland see Roko bus.

6.            Charter. Nemo can arrange bus service for any kind of group, for any distance.

 Apply for detailed information and time schedules.