International artist-in-residency programme GuestRoomMaribor was established in 2011 by Pekarna Magdalenske mreže (PMM) – central organization for non-institutional and independent cultural production in Maribor, Slovenia. PMM activity is defined by conceptual field of informal culture, subculture, deinstitutionalized culture, contra-culture, independent culture and urban culture, as well as social movements. In the context of contemporary art PMM represent an important generator of non-institutional and independent art practices; it encourages socially engaged art, hybrid and experimental artistic expressions and approaches, supports especially young (local) artists etc.

The primary idea of GuestRoomMaribor - the only residency programme in Slovenia’s second largest city - is to prove continuous presence of “foreign” artists in the form of a one month long residence stay. As well as to encourage art production to the large extent characterized by the specificity of local cultural-artistic context. Therefore GuestRoomMaribor by selection process from the very beginning privileges artistic approaches that form more direct connection with the specific social, historical, political, etc. context of Maribor, local independent cultural producers and the wider community of the city (participatory, site-specific art projects, interventions in public space, etc.). Residency programme is namely deeply conditioned by our vision of the point of cultural workers and art production international circulation as well as residency programmes in general. It comes from the assumption that cultural/art production is not only conditioned with socio-political context but has also the potential to influence or intervene into it. That is why particular approaches, for instance local community-based and/or oriented, hybrids between art and research and the like, are preferred or privileged.

About: Maribor, local and Slovenian art scene

Sociopolitical context of Maribor: from 90's deindustrialized and disintegrated city, starting point of protests wave in Slovenia between 2012 and 2013 which among other resulted in establishment of a platform of self-organizing city quarter assemblies, moderated by Iniciativa mestni zbor whose main goal is the process of empowerment of citizens and initiative/campaign for participatory management of the municipal budget. In 2012 European capital of culture; planned sustainable development projects which resulted primarily in perpetuation of differences between public institutions and independent cultural producers, however it should have had positive effects on the deepening connections within independent cultural scene. In the context of the ECOC 2012 in Maribor also the Centre for alternative and autonomous production (CAAP) was established – a platform for integration, research and practice of new economies (co-working, cooperatives, etc.), an incubator of social entrepreneurship and the new social and ecological practices.

Some of the non-governmental cultural/art organizations in Maribor:

Public institutions in Maribor:

Pekarna Magdalenske mreže originates from the concept of creative and emancipatory physical and mental space, initially meant for activities of production, promotion of production and informal education on all areas of art, culture, youth work, civil society and active citizenship. In the sense of content, idea, realization and space, our activity is defined by conceptual field of informal culture, subculture, deinstitutionalized culture, contra-culture, independent culture and urban culture, as well as social movements.

Slovenian cultural and art framework defines a strong tradition/heritage of conceptual art, poorly developed/non-existent art system and market according to the Western model (public funding of artistic production with minimal input of private funds), the inequality of access to resources and employment, infrastructure, etc. between (national culture-representative) public institutions and independent cultural producers (NGOs, self-employed artists etc.), a strong tradition of politically-engaged art (especially during socialism period), as well as a pioneer collection of mostly avant-garde art of the former European socialist countries by central institution for modern and contemporary art in Slovenia, Moderna galerija Ljubljana in Muzej sodobne umetnosti Metelkova.

Some of the non-governmental cultural/art organizations in Slovenia:


Slovenj Gradec:




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