What is the value of community of A4?

Slavo Krekovič

A4 is a unique cultural center. It is a unique model because it consists of several associations that have been active in their professional fields since long time ago. And at the same time they somehow came together to establish the platform for support of innovative, and contemporary, and experimental, and most current artistic trends. And what we felt at the beginning, and we can still feel it now, the society including the political representation is quite conservative, and it is very hard to explain, what value of such a space and community could possibly be, and what it is, and what it means for the community to have a space where artists can create and where the most fresh artworks are being presented.

So we feel there is a big gap between how A4 is perceived within the community on one hand and general public including sponsors, potential sponsors, and politicians, and city officials on the other hand. Maybe it is because in Slovakia we feel that there is a certain lack of cultural education. Maybe we are still in a process of transformation from the socialist cultural model into something more based on civic initiatives, on the people. And I believe that this will be the future.

There are many creative people living in this region, and they have to find their platforms for expression. So this will be slowly moving and also pushing the politicians to really get aware of this fact that there is something that emerges bottom-up and it needs and it will get some support in the future.

A4 has had several problems in communication and relationship with the official institutions whether on the state level or on the city level where there was no support for independent activities. And most of the time I felt that there is the need of really restructuring the understanding and support of the non-profit initiatives that are not established by the official institutions.

So in 2012 we suddenly had to leave our space in the state building in the city center. And in about 3 weeks we had to move to a new location. So that was one step. Luckily enough in fall 2012 the same year we found the new space that was offered by foundation Intenda that kind of felt that this kind of activities and an independent artistic activities would be appropriate for their building. So in very short time in October we had to move our stuff and to really rebuild, renovate the old space in former YMCA building, to build new bar, new performance space. So we were quite proud that we managed to get this new space in good shape in about two weeks with help of lot of volunteers of course. 

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Slavo Krekovič

Slavo Krekovič

A4, Bratislava, Slovakia

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