Pekarna magdalenske mreže

At this conference, Pekarna is represented by Borut Wenzel, Project Coordinator.

Ob železnici 8, SI-2000 Maribor, Slovenia
Contact: Gregor Kosi & Borut Wenzel

social/community center (art, culture, but also other fields)
nonprofit association / NGO, established in 1996 by a group of citizens

A former military bakery, Pekarna was squatted by artists and activists in 1994. At 6,000 m2, Pekarna has become the largest independent cultural center in northwest Slovenia. The centre represents ideas of alternative culture, free society, and a peaceful future and hosts public performances, workshops, studios, youth projects, and international exchange.
Pekarna is currently negotiating with the city authorities for the future of the center, including its refurbishment.


Decision-making: The organization has a legal board, but most decisions are taken within the programming board organized by the current director. The programming board is organized as a collective of representatives of current programs. Once an initiative becomes part of the program it retains its autonomy but has to follow agreed annual financial plans.

Organizational openness: There is a standing invitation to participate in the organization’s programming and organizational structure.

Venue/s / resources:

The Pekarna Cultural Center consists of 5 buildings with around 40 users (organizations, initiatives, artists). Our organization possesses a total space of approximately 1200 m2: a multi-purpose hall, a gallery, workshops, offices, and storerooms. The buildings’ technical situation is quite poor, although it has been restored on our part with much improvisation and creativity and we have become quite well equipped technically (audio, video, photo…) over the years.

Since the municipality is refurbishing one of the buildings at present, we have obtained some additional temporary spaces in the city center.
We have approximately 10 people employed on various kinds of contracts plus 30 to 50 collaborators working on programs and projects. Under organized voluntary work schemes, we 30-40 annual volunteers who each work for a year.


Budget: more than €100,000 and less than €300,000.

Co-productions: Yes, beside our own productions, we also host productions and co-produce events. Arrangements are flexible according to circumstances.

We have three possible arrangements:

  1. in-house productions (initiatives that match our mission; we take care of costs),
  2. not-for-profit productions by other organizations (which must cover staff and running costs), and
  3. outstanding productions by other organizations recognized as commercial (commercial rates for our services).

Services: We have an Info Centre that provides weekly newsletters (including promotion of not-for-profit events, funding possibilities, and so on), organizes non-formal education, etc.

International collaboration: PMM is a member of Trans Europe Halles (European network of cultural centers), in which we collaborate normally on projects.


Participation: Artist-in-residence programs are orientated towards collaborating with locals; we organize workshops focused on creativity for young and older people, regular debates as the School of Political Literacy, …

Gathering citizens: PMM initiates and supports networking (we coordinate local organizations active in youth information and counseling, and also Maribor’s network of voluntary organizations).

Neighborhood: Our Info Centre is currently working on a yearly program for young people in our particular district of Maribor.

Advocacy / activism: From time to time, based on the civic initiatives that make up part of our program at that point.

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