The “La Carpa – Espacio Artístico“ (The Tent – Artistic Space), head office of Varuma Teatro and future Andalusia School of Circus Arts, is an ambitious project with an steady program which is in accordance with the technical requirements needed in order to develop the disciplines that the company already investigates and works in.
This is a meeting and training area, as well as, a storage spot for technical equipment and staging. In summary, it is a different space that did not exist in Andalusia until today. A space that is aiming to become a reference for the Andalusian independent cultural world.
Its emergence in a peripheral neighbourhood, as well as the cession to different associations/collective groups, it show us its will to decentralize the culture and support situations that were abandoned by the public administration.
The overall socio-cultural project of “La Carpa” is being composed by different self-build structures and instalations, that are coming from the cession, and/or recycling, and/or reuse of other elements from previous experiences. Some of these elements are: the big tops, the Chimpúm
, the spider
office, the refrigerated truck, the portable atelier, and the Aula Abierta
, among others. All of these spaces are being given to collective groups that need to meet, practice or give classes with a cultural and/or social purpose.
Evaluation and Protocols
The project of La Carpa has been funded through a variety of means; from agreements about the use of the lot, material donations, collective construction, a barter system, and the “Goteo” crowdfunding social network. All of these elements allowed the space to be converted in an example of how self-managed models and multiple funding modes coexist in an articulated way constructing spaces that are independent of the government-managed and public funding for cultural works.
It is important to highlight that the collaborative construction process, the speed in the decision making process of the workteams, the organization and the ability to confront to the risks, made this project a success.
Several obstacles have been overcome, all of them related to topics as: the ways to fund the project (subsidies and loans), theft of the collective groups work material and equipment, the bankrupt of the contractor company that was doing the land arrangements, and mainly, the delay in the procurance of the construction license, that until this moment, it has not been an impediment to make the constructions work and begin the activities.
The interest of Varuma and Recetas Urbanas about including other collective groups in the use of the area, as well as in the responsabilities and maintenance works of the place, is what provokes the appeareance of La Jarapa, El Cuarteto Maravilla, Engatosarte, Gloria, Alfonso, Isabel, etc. These are collectives that are commited with the groupal construction of the space, dividing and sharing responsabilities and the management of the whole project. This represented a substantial improvement, because the biggest risk that Varuma was under during the first six months, was the physical and mental exhaustion on account of the precariousness of the infrastructural services, the long shifts of vigilance and work under that circumstances that could have crashed the project.
We aim to produce other type of politics and policies. In other words, as long as “they” do not expand the citizen rights and improve the legal system, we have found our own way to function through collective actions doing inhabitable interventions that allow the citizens to claim their greater right to use the city in which they live in; yet the question remains: What must a group of citizens do to obtain legal rights for publicly-driven re-use of abandoned and obsolete buildings?
Budgets and Resources
Avenida de las Asociaciones de Vecinos, s/n
Project Data Sheet
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Eme3 International Architecture Festival
, p.18-21, Barcelona, España, 2012.
L’Architecture d’Aujourd’hui nº393
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Threshold nº41 – Revolution!
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SMALL Architecture Now!
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