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Nová Cvernovka begins full operation in former school

The creative community not only successfully moved to a new place but advanced to a new, higher level

The biggest event for the public this year will again be the 1 May – Day of Opened Studios festival. (Source: Jana Liptáková)

Fellowship and good energy. These are feelings visitors can physically feel when visiting the new Nová Cvernovka culture centre 15 minutes by tram from Bratislava’s centre. The creative community of architects, designers, painters, photographers, IT experts and other so-called creatives not only successfully moved to a new place but advanced to a new, higher level. Unlike the original Cvernovka near the Mlynské Nivy bus station, the new cultural and creative venue in the former chemical school on Račianska Street offers a rich year-round programme for the public.

Read also:Slovak innovators made the New Europe 100 Team

“Our ambition is to create a cultural venue for various genres with quality production,” said Viliam Csino, who is responsible for cultural events in Nová Cvernovka, while a film director by occupation. “All these expectations should be fulfilled this year. This means that people can come and enjoy concerts, performances, exhibitions, discussions and lectures as well as meet interesting people and get inspired.”

How it started

When the previous home of the creative community, the former thread factory known as Cvernovka, changed owners, the creatives had to pack and look for a new place. They found it in the former secondary chemistry school on Račianska street in the Nové Mesto borough of Bratislava. Its owner, the Bratislava Self-governing Region (BSK), rented it out to them for 25 years.

The building, since it was abandoned for six years, was in bad condition and needed reconstruction. Architects, designers, IT experts and other creatives rolled up their sleeves and replaced heating, piping and removed decaying plaster to make the school habitable again. They worked on common spaces as well as turning former classes and chemical labs into their future studios. Some kept bricked tables in former labs, others preserved original lighting or floors. Others changed the rooms completely. Now the former school houses more than 40 studios, of which 70 percent were moved from the original Cvernovka.

On the ground floor they created a multifunctional space with a café and a stage with capacity up to 400 people where concerts, discussions and other events for the general public can take place.

It took about one and a year and a half to do all the work. So far they have invested about €1 million into the premises, including a commercial loan and voluntary work. The VÚB Foundation has helped them with a contribution of €350,000, which it is paying them out between 2017 and 2019.

“What has happened here is a small miracle,” said photographer Šymon Kliman, who is the director of opportunities in Nová Cvernovka. “What we have built here usually lasts much longer in western Europe.”

What a programme

There are two types of activities in Nová Cvernovka – events for the general public like concerts, discussions and workshops taking place in the multifunctional hall and the activities of the Cvernovka Foundation focusing on societal problems on a longer basis.

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Topic: Tourism and travel in Slovakia


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