The ŁAŹNIA Centre for Contemporary Art was one of the first public cultural institutions established in Poland after the transformations of 1989. It began as an initiative by local independent artists opposed to traditional models of art. Their only chance to realize their projects was to create their own art space – one free from censorship, prejudices, stereotypes and inhibitions. An old and dilapidated former public bathhouse on Jaskółcza street first opened in 1908, turned out to be an ideal space for showing art. In response to a grassroots initiative by artists, in 1998 the Gdańsk City Council designated it a municipal cultural institution: the Łaźnia Centre for Contemporary Art.