Renewed Social Infrastructure with Deep Roots in Nice
25 September 2019

Association La Semeuse, a social service organization with deep history in Nice, is looking to the future with upgrades to two community spaces that serve thousands each year.

The Centre cultural La Providence and the Théâtre de La Semeuse, both in Nice’s Old Town, are being renovated with support from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation (SNF). The cultural center hosts exhibits, artist residencies, concerns, and music and art classes. The theatre stages 70 productions each year in addition to holding classes and conducting outreach to schools and community-based organizations. Both institutions have become cultural reference points for locals and visitors alike.

La Semeuse was founded in 1904, but builds on the city’s long and rich history. The cultural center, for instance, occupies an adapted former church, constructed in 1699. Today, the organization’s wide impact is felt through a range of arts, sports, cultural, and educational activities, through which hundreds of volunteers reach many thousands of people each year.

At an event celebrating the launch of the theater’s first season in its renovated premises, SNF Program Officer Charis Desinioti remarked, “These are quality spaces for everyone—their neighbors in the old city, visitors from further afield, people young and old. We at the Stavros Niarchos Foundation are thinking more and more about public space and the salutary effects it can have, when done right, on social cohesion and societal health. Here we have two examples of exactly what this sort of social infrastructure should look like.”