Crowdfunding since 2010
The plug&play workspace is a mobile Atelier made of shipping containers. It saves costs through the use of recycled materials and still conforms to base level building requirements. Together with other mobile rooms, it can be temporarily parked on grounds dedicated to cultural and artistic activities, for example on the ground of the association "contain't" in the city of Stuttgart. At this location, 20 parcels for mobile studios will soon be available to rent.
Funding period
3/27/15 - 5/20/15
About 2-3 months after success
Website & Social Media
Minimum amount (Start level): €
20,000 €
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What is this project all about?

This project is about two steps:

1. Organisation of 20 parcels to rent:
if we succeed in the Crowd Funding campaign, we will be able to organize the infrastructural facilities and rent the first parcels until the beginning of next summer. This will be a lot of money, but efficiently spent because contain't is conceived to stay flexible and mobile.
That means, the majority of the infrastructure will move with us and accelerate the transport and build time at each new site. Therefore our project can help provide relief to places with a lack of small unit, affordable work space.

2. Build a prototype, keep records on it and publish our experience:
after a long time studying the possibilities of container architecture and communicating with building authorities, we would like to build one (or more) prototypes and share our experience. We want to publish an indication manual available for free through the internet that can be taken, edited and expanded. This information could be precious for potential independent contractors or workspace users and an incentive to create more mobile workspaces community both in Stuttgart, as well as throughout the rest of the world.

Our approach:
Keep the container structure intact! It may sound like a limitation but this approach leads to avoid construction and legal issues as well as save money. In case a plug&play workspace will not move to a new place after having been used, it can be returned or resold. Containers lose just a small part of their initial value: by leaving them intact is possible to get a majority of the initial investment returned.

First pitch:
We explained our architectural vision and our ideas about the organization of a mobile workspace community in a brochure that will soon be published on our Startnext blog.

What is the project goal and who is the project for?

The free and self-determined art scene holds important social, cultural and economic roles in the urban society. Through our project, creative innovation is developed and budding artists are provided spaces to show their work. The space acts as a platform for networking and connecting with others in the creative field. Nevertheless, the importance of non-commercial creative spaces is currently miserably neglected by urban planning and territorial policy. Promotion runs mostly into economically oriented projects in the area of creative industry and media. Numerous socio-cultural facilities as well as sub-, niche- or off culture projects were forced in the recent years to restructure, conforming to more economically viable projects or closed down entirely.

With the artists' workspace community created through contain’t’s 20 plug and play workspaces in Stuttgart, the association enhances the offer of private or communal agencies for temporary uses which offer only spaces for commercial uses for startups and incorporators in the creative and media industries.

Thus some fall through the cracks:

  • artists with very limited financial resources
  • non-commercial artisians
  • experimental creative minds
  • students of arts, music or media faculties

Here is where contain't starts with the plug & play workspaces:

By reaching the funding threshold, contain't is able to provide the first artists workspace lots in the low budget range at the beginning of summer.
By reaching the funding target, contain't is able to provide artists workshop lots AND ready to use plug and play workspaces.

As non profit carrier contain't promotes in particular:

  • experimental art, music and architecture
  • non-established, non commercial culture
  • intelligent, mobile, flexible and modular concepts of space (in architectural, public,virtual spaces)
  • approaches to strengthen self-managed and self-organized culture
  • the art-related, cultural and prejudice-free education of children, youths and adults
  • collaboration projects with the neighborhood
  • projects with resource conserving and / or of an integrative nature
  • strengthening of emancipatory positions and concepts in the project and beyond
  • artistical open source / open hardware / open knowledge – concepts
  • the convergence, integration and interaction of users, producers, audience and artists.

Why would you support this project?

  • Do you want to sustainably improve the offer of spaces for creative people in Stuttgart?
  • Would you like to offer your innovative input for a cultural urban planning?
  • Are you interested in an indications manual to shape your own container or you do plan to build your own atelier?
  • Are there unused properties and too few workspaces for art and culture in your city?
  • Would you like contain't to offer ready-to-use ateliers in summer?

Contain't has already concluded the most important preliminary works, such as building applications and preparing the ground for the arrival of the ateliers. Now we just need the money for the last infrastructures, the first prototype and the documentation.

With your help you will support the cultural multiplicity and artistic free spaces not just in Stuttgart: we know about similar projects in Munich, Frankfurt and Karlsruhe.

How will we use the money if the project is successfully funded?

1.Organisation of 20 parcels to rent:

By reaching the funding threshold we will be able to bring the necessary infrastructural facilities on the site and make it conform to the building applications requirements. By doing that, it will be possible to organize and equip the parcels.

The 20.000 € goal is broken down to include:

  • Provision of electricity 1.770 € + 1.200 €
  • Tools and machines 4.000 €
  • Security and administration requirements 5.700 €
  • Restroom container 5.000 €
  • Miscellaneous (planning permission, lights and other construction materials) 2.330 €

2. Build a prototype, keep records on it and publish our experience:

If contain't reaches the funding target we can buy one or more shipping containers, build the interiors and share our experience.

The relative costs include:

  • one (ore more) shipping containers
  • materials for building the interiors
  • documentation and publication

Who are the people behind the project?

Behind this project is the nonprofit association contain't e.V.! contain't counts about 400 sustaining members and 25 active members. We are supported by a multitude of artists, musicians and events organizers from Stuttgart and the surrounding region.

We are organized in various working groups with different interests and competences, which complete and support each other:

  • Office
  • Communication
  • Free radicals
  • Words
  • Electricity
  • Culture
  • Architecture
  • Ateliers

Following members have been active working on the “plug&play workspace” project:

  • Leman Altinisik
  • Elias Bohn
  • Pilar Caballero
  • Daniel Geiger
  • Julie Hart
  • Berndt Hietler
  • Matthias Knöller
  • Tanja Krämer
  • Annabella Maneljuk
  • Anna Michaeli
  • Anton Nagler
  • Aaron Schirrmann
  • Sina Strecker
  • Mark Strempel
  • Marta Toscano
  • Marco Trotta
  • Simon Wallenda

Here we would like to take the chance to sincerely thank Jan R. Obst and Maurice Beretitsch, without whom this brochure wouldn’t be possible. Also, a big thanks to Jo and Annika for the workshop moderation and to Jakob for his beautiful audio contribution. Last but not least, a big thanks to the office OLAAR and to Sir Pocanschi for the technical help.

Here you can discover more about contain't:

plug and play team

The crowdfunding project has been successfully completed. Supporting and ordering is no longer available on Startnext.

  • The processing of orders placed will be handled directly by the project owners according to the stated delivery time.

  • The production and delivery is the responsibility of the project owners themselves.

  • Cancellations and returns are subject to the terms and conditions of the respective project owner.

  • Revocations and cancellations via Startnext are no longer possible.

What does this mean? 
Legal notice
contain't e.V.
Simon Wallenda
Güterstr. 10
70372 Stuttgart Deutschland

Vereinsregisternummer: VR720978
Gemeinnützig seit: 10.11.2011
Steuernummer: 99015/31425

Weitere Information:



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plug & play workspace - mobile ateliers in shipping containers

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