OPERATION: CITY 2005
ex Badel Factory
Operation:City was a ten day event in Zagreb, Croatia that temporarily occupied the permises of abandoned industrial complex of the former factory Badel. A part of activities took place at the site of former industrial complex of city slaughterhouse Zagrepčanka. The programme and activities were the product of collaboration of all major initiatives and organizations active in Zagreb’s broader independent cultural scene organized by 25 cultural organizations, artist organizations and initiatives (40 megazine za hakiranje stvarnosti [clubture] | Anime / manga zajednica | ATTACK! – Autonomni kulturni centar + Autonomna tvornica kulture / Komikaze | BADco. | [BLOK] | Breakalicius | Broken BPM | Centar za dramsku umjetnost – CDU | Centar za slobodarske studije i Što čitaš? | Confusion | Eksperimentalna slobodna scena – EkS-scena | FADE IN – Fantastično dobra institucija | Frequency | GROODANJE | Groove Sanctuary | KONTEJNER – Biro suvremene umjetničke prakse | Kulturtreger / Booksa | Multuimedijalni institut [mi2] | Nova Grupa | Platforma 9,81 | Postpesimisti | Srpsko kulturno društvo Prosvjeta Zagreb | Udruženje za razvoj kulture – URK | Što, kako i za koga – WHW).
"Operatipn:City" builds upon the project Invisible Zagreb, which Platforma 9,81 initiated two years earlier with the goal to identify the potentials for experimenting with new typologies of public spaces in those spaces that have lost their primary function and were neglected by urban policies. Invisible Zagreb has also indicated the transitional transformations which left their spatial mark on the city and therefore demand urban strategies that alter the habitual planning models and places them in a wider developmental perspective. The most radical transformation took place in the wider centre of the city remain unused and left to decay. The temporary appropriation of these spaces through various cultural programmes can close the void left in the transition process and catalyze the vision of development considering the specific character of each location.
If we leave aside the spatial aspects, and consider the development of the independent culture as a whole, that is best demonstrated by the independent scene in Zagreb, we can conclude that a significant change of context took place. After a period of growth and relevant national and international achievements, what becomes increasingly manifest is the basic need for structural transformations that should provide the stability for independent initiatives and their activities through new financing models and better conditions for production. This agenda was also publicly discussed over two months before the event, when the organizations in project Zagreb – Cultural Capital of Europe 3000, Clubs Močvara, Attack!, MAMA and Croatian Youth Network initiated a process of public debate, in which the issue of independent culture and youth in Zagreb was discussed in the context of the city’s development. It is the lack of space for activities that was pointed out as the fundamental problem of independent culture and youth initiatives. The advocacy process resulted in Declaration signed by all the relevant political parties, where one of the key demands is adaptation for use of one of the existing spaces downtown Zagreb and establishment of a joint multifunctional centre for independent culture and a macro-regional centre for youth that could accommodate specific spatial demands for joint activities of independent cultural and youth organizations. In this sense, Operation:City contributes to further public discussion of the described issues and works on the promotion of partnership between the independent cultural sector and youth sector in the city of Zagreb.