On the grounds of a former foundry, in an industrial area in the district of Lichtenberg in Berlin we are creating open workshops: in the past years we have installed one for woodwork, one for working metal, a tailoring and a printing workshop, a communal garden and two music studios. We are still working on two artist studios and a photo studio.
People with ideas find an environment in which they can fulfill their scientific, construction or artistic projects. They have access to the whole variety of the different workshops and can, therefore, accomplish projects that would be impossible with only one single workshop. The people responsible for each workshop are there to lend a helping hand and to give advise.
This diversity of workshops and the interaction between them is the most important aspect of our project - it prospers from the active cooperation within the group and the many possibilities created by the large spectrum of skills held by the individuals.
To allow more people to take part, we are planning to offer short courses and similar events within the building.
Our most important goal is to implement our vision of a new mode of working:
At the Alte Gießerei Berlin, permanent and temporary members can work independently on their own, or join one of our group projects. The creative cooperation with others allows new perspectives on their own work. The different skills and kinds of experience that every person brings to the group leads to new ideas for the implementation of each project. And, of course, due to the mutual help, projects can be completed more quickly and easily - some projects can, in fact, only be accomplished in this way.
The projects in our organisation deal with mobility, sustainability, green energy, arts, design and environmental friendliness. Bringing these projects to fruition is another important goal of the Alte Gießerei Berlin. We believe that working responsibly within a community is a first step towards reaching this goal. In order to facilitate the implementation and increase the reach of our concept of working, we are networking with other organisations, open workshops and groups that have a similar mode of operation. We also offer seminars and regularly invite the public to exhibitions and other events at the foundry building.
An especially warm welcome is offered to the people of Lichtenberg, as another goal of the Alte Gießerei Berlin is to work for and with the population of Lichtenberg - helping to create a diverse and exciting community for artists and craftspeople.
We hope to reach all people who can identify with our concept and have the urge to turn their ideas into reality - we give these ideas space and tools to develop. We also want to reach people interested in art, culture and creativity- our doors are open and we would like to invite them in, in order to discover and contribute to the ideas, progress and projects all happening at the Alte Gießerei Berlin.
We want to encourage and develop modes of working that are simultaneously autonomous and community-based.
Our experience shows that the seemingly impossible can become possible. This experience is even more rewarding when we can share the success with each other.
At the Alte Gießerei Berlin, everyone who is interested in helping the project can also benefit form the project.
How about putting your own musical ideas onto a CD, produced in our music studio and then printing the CD covers and posters for you concert in the printing workshop?
Or why not build your very own piece of furniture in the carpentry workshop and then upholster it in the tailors workshop?
If we are successful in receiving financial help, part of the money will be used for the planning permission process, without which the workshops cannot be legally used. The cost involved for the planning process can be split into three components:
Firstly, we have to hire an architect to submit the planning permission application.
Secondly, to cover the costs for the processing of the application and control by the building authorities. The final expenditure will be the implementation of the conditions given by the building authorities necessary for us to open the workshops, which we want to carry out as quickly as possible.
The magnitude of these costs is not under our control and will be set by the building authorities.
With our campaign on startnext.de we hope to raise the sum of 5500 Euro, in order to cover the cost of the architect. If we can raise even more money it will be used to do the building work deemed necessary by the authorities and part of the fees charged for the processing of our application.
When we have all necessary permissions we will finally be able to legally use our workshops, invite guests, use the space for exhibitions, offer seminars and classes, complete projects, get people together and, last but not least, sleep better a night!
We are the members of the Alte Gießerei Berlin e. V. We are people of all ages and backgrounds. Some of us are students of science, law, art and culture. Others are tradespeople, designers, photographers, artists, musicians, physiotherapists, dressmakers.
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