From little acorns big oak trees grow…
Tűzraktér Independent Cultural Centre (backed up by the Art Sector Foundation) first opened its doors way back in of June in 2005, giving new life to a previously abandoned 10,000 square meter factory building in Budapest's Tuzolto street. As an open cultural space, they organize programmes on a daily basis, a programme which includes a very wide spectrum of fine and performed arts.
They also work as a creative centre by providing opportunities to as many creative projects as they can. Musicians and theatre companies use the space for reversals; artists can create studios in the building to explore their visions, secure that the management is constantly trying to keep these opportunities free, or as cheap as possible, like their entry fees. Due to these two main functions, the Cultural Centre is a place where cultural products are not only shown, but created. But it’s not just art for art’s sake, they are also active in the field of education, mostly art laboratories where artists can educate children, and adults as well. One of their goals is to create programmes and activities for youth with a less-privileged background.
Thanks to its great publicity, Tűzraktér became a meeting point of young people and a scene for contemporary experimental arts. The pieces of art or the performances organized by their teams have received great attention from the general public. All organizers work as volunteers, and have managed to have exhibitions of hundreds of artists, including collaborations with the Hungarian Academy of Arts, theatre shows, contemporary dance performances, concerts from jazz, world music, to blues and punk, musicians from all over the world, circus shows, artistic performances, literature evenings, academic presentations, festivals, fashion shows, etc.
Hosting artists from around the world as well, they promote cross-cultural exchanges and exhibitions. And unlike many artspaces, Tűzraktér also hosts a baby-mummy room for artists with children. The project was mostly for young people but it welcomed people of any age. Children, women, people with a less privileged background, minorities and any kind of disability, immigrants were all involved.
Tűzraktér is not a building, but an intention, one that can affiliate parallel projects, and cooperate with different kinds of initiatives in Hungary as well as on the international scene. From 2008, cooperating with the local government of the 6th district of Budapest, they were given the right to occupy another disused building (Hegedű utca 3, 1061 Budapest, Hungary). At the moment, in the Art lab part of Tűzraktér, they provide offices or workshops for more than 350 persons, mostly artists, but including civil organisations too.
The Art laboratory is functioning every day, a real community with different people, groups, civil organizations who collaborate with each other and become part of the life of the center. The users of the center help in improving it, and they make a lot of cultural programmes at the place. They must be active but also the organiser group of the center is helping them with their universal needs, problems and projects. The users support the center with the overhead of the center.
This way the Art lab is self-supporting and hopefully with other supports it can be a long life system, proving that great things grow from little seeds.
Tűzraktér, 1061 Budapest, Hegedű Street 3., Hungary, +39 06 70 434-2499, www.tuzrakter.hu