Hamburg is known as the capital of media and design in Germany. But there’s way more creativity to explore in this metropolitan city than just advertising agencies and fancy fashion stores. In fact, in the city centre of Hamburg, surrounded by skyscrapers with offices for tax inspectors and lawyers, there is an atrium occupied by artists, known as the artistic heart of Hamburg. The district called Gängeviertel seems like a chaotic open-air atelier with more details and impressions around than our senses are able to pervieve.
It seems as if there are no rules in Gängeviertel. Everyone can be whoever he wants to be. Everyone is welcome and nothing seems impossible or weird in this little atrium in the heart of Hamburg: A place for art, freedom, creativity, music and tolerance. The project was founded in 2009, to safe the atrium from being tore down. Since then it became the artistic heart of Hamburg and ten thousands of visitors from around the world came to see the exhibitions, go on concerts and parties or participate in talks and workshops. The diverse programme includes screen-printing workshops, photography competitions, movie nights, political talks, flea markets, concerts and art installations. One of the highlights of the district is a little vintage shop called Umsonstladen, which literally translates into "for free shop". Here you can bring your own clothes or get new ones for free or in exchange for a donation of your choice. Another highlight of Gängeviertel is the underground techno club Kindergarten. The name of the club is also the leading concept inside: Within the dirty walls and the dark sounds of this little basement club, you find Lego bricks, toys and a tiny cave with a bed and VHS Disney movies.
But Gängeviertel is way more than just a district or an art project. It is a community of artists and free spirits, living against the norms and creating a space where the stereotypes and conventions of the outside world are not being cared about. The community includes art galleries and small exhibition halls, but also clubs, cafés, shops, apartments and many social projects – working local and international. "Komm in die Gänge" (engl. get on with it) and make sure you visit Gängeviertel, the artistic heart of Hamburg, to experience the true creativity of this vibrant city.
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