Saturday, March 29, 2014

Levente Polyák (curator and urban policy researcher) representing KÉK - Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre (Budapest), which has initiated and managed a variety of events, research programs, publication projects and international cooperation. The organisation has a long experience in bringing together professionals, artists, cultural producers and theoreticians for cooperation.   

Šárka Svobodová and Jaroslav Sedlak representing 4AM Forum for Architecture and Media (BRNO). 4AM is an open platform of experimental approaches and a wide range of activities related to architecture, urbanism, urban space, contemporary art, and new media. Within such an interdisciplinary framework and with emphasis on the involvement of both professionals and the general public, current cultural and social phenomena, related issues and questions are both articulated and critically observed through a variety of forms of open discussions, international workshops, lectures, exhibitions and events held in public venues. 

4AM has been partner in KÉK's project VAC (Vacant Central Europe) since January 2013.

KÉK in collaboration with 4AM and GeoAIR worked on a project VCEE (Vacant Central and Eastern Europe). For this we organised 10-Day workshops in Tbilisi.

The Vacant Central and Eastern Europe project follows the project VAC (Vacant Central Europe) initiated in 2013 by KÉK -Hungarian Contemporary Architecture Centre. It aims to address the problem of vacancy by mapping empty properties, by researching planning instruments, architectural tools and by exchanging experiences and strategies of intervention that make the temporary use of empty properties and their conversion for another use possible. The project's objective is to turn the negative effects of the economic crisis and post-industrial economic restructuring into opportunities - one of the target of the project is to help NGOs, social enterprises as well as community groups with social objectives to find and access vacant urban properties for temporary use. By finding space for these initiatives, the project aims to serve as a catalyst in helping organisations cooperate with other functions and uses in the same spaces, creating synergies and unfold their capacities. The program consists of activities including identifying local organisations in need of space; finding empty properties and matching them with the organisations; developing the samples for legal and commercial contracts defining the in-between use of these spaces; mentoring and incubating the organisations as well as helping them elaborate an organisational strategy; negotiating with owners; and organising professional and large public events. The main target is to change local policies approach to vacancy issue. Through temporary use of these spaces we aim to rescue these buildings from total destruction as many of them are out of use, abandoned and due to insufficient financial means state has no possibility to take care of them. Through temporary usage NGOs, social enterprises, community and individuals raise awareness and create other possibilities and functions for out of use infrastructures.

Interview with Levente Polyák, Šárka Svobodová and Jaroslav Sedlak in Copyright Magazine #10

This workshop was realised in the frame of the EU project SPACES.

This project was funded by the European Union through the Eastern Partnership Culture Programme.
Participants’ residency was supported by European Cultural Foundation.