Креативные пространства (Creative spaces) in SPb

Креативные пространства (Creative spaces) in SPb
04 May 2015

These so called creative spaces are a kind of establishments or business formations found in St. Petersburg and other cities of Russia. The idea behind it has been around for a while: creative spaces resemble the phalanstères (or Phalansteries) of Charles Fourier – French philosopher and socialist thinker (1772-1837). A phalanstére was supposed to be a type of building designed to house a self-sufficient community of up to 2000 people living and working there. I think it is a great way to get back in touch with people, as unfortunately we have come to a point where we spend more time on the phone, then with friends and family.

Long story short – the idea is considered utopic and none of its implementations have lasted for more than twelve years. But the modern creative spaces seem to thrive and multiply, so what’s going on there?

Welcome to Taiga – a creative space on Dvortsovaya embankment 20, not far from the Winter Palace. The founders of the project describe it as a community of young professionals, united by the idea of free and productive labour. In this old mansion with a great view on the Peter and Paul Fortress you will find stores selling clothes (local designers of course, nothing mainstream), music instruments and equipment, books and professional magazines, photography gear, and also advertisement agencies, various design studios, printing houses, a vegetarian bar and a hairdresser. The building has a big hall where social and cultural events are regularly hosted, and an inner yard, which in summer time is used for creative purposes too. As you can imagine, the environment at Taiga gets pretty busy, and the idea behind it is to foster cooperation and sharing of knowledge between all the tenants of the space. Well, it seems to work well.

Now, when it comes to creative spaces in St. Petersburg, we have to talk about Tkachi (“Weavers”). That place is home to over 60 organizations and is officially considered a business center. A great deal of tenants are schools and educational projects: marketing school, music school, language school, sewing courses, fashion courses, dancing, singing – the list is long. There are also some clothing stores, some music stores, and offices of several leading St. Petersburg media and event companies – for example, Geometria.ru. Obviously, these are not all the things you will find there, so go there yourself and enjoy: Ovodniy kanal embankment, 60 (Набережная Обводного канала, д. 60). Oh, and it’s called “Weavers” because it’s occupying the building of a former weaving factory.

Lastly, if your creativity (like mine) is much related to or dependent on tasty food and drink, you should seriously consider the clusters (that’s what they call their spaces) of BS Group. These people have already created 3 clusters and are working on the fourth one. The three existing ones are:

«Архитектор» (“Architect”) – 6 bars, and art gallery, a photography school, about ten conceptual stores, a bicycle workshop, a wedding salon, a hostel and a mini-hotel. Millionnaya ulitsa 10.

Пространство Флигель (a wing or and outbuilding of a house) – a bunch of restaurants and bars, including a very pleasant vinil disk shop/bar (honestly, much more bar than a vinil disk shop), a shisha bar – if you’re into water pipe, this is definitely the place to go, and a great wine bar; also show rooms, clothes store, language school, and a hostel. Ulitsa Vosstaniya 24 (it’s tricky to find, so feel free to contact me for details).

Третий кластер (the “Third cluster”) – a genuinely culinary cluster (*heavy breathing*). Among the multiple eateries – donut shop, coffee shop, “ProstoVino” wine bar, «Кухня» culinary space, a couple more cafes and bars, and then some art and design studios (seems like no creative space goes without those).

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