Studio "Fajtovščina" at Pešaki building, Autonomous Culture Zone Metelkova City
Metelkova is an internationally-renowned alternative culture community in the centre of Slovenia's capital, that often draws comparisons to Copenhagen's Kristiania. A self-declared 'Autonomous Culture Zone,' Metelkova Mesto occupies the former 'Fourth of July' military barracks originally commissioned by the Austro-Hungarian army back in 1882 and completed in 1911. The space consists of seven buildings and 12,500m2 - making it a sort of city within a city - comprising a former prison (now Celica Hostel), several clubs, live music spaces, art galleries and artist studios. Since it was first created in 1993, Metelkova has consistently been the object of political jockeying, with the long-term status and survival of the community uncertain. Constantly threatened by the lure of development, neo-conservative politicians and internal problems within the 'autonomous zone,' Metelkova has endured simply through the creativity, imagination, energy and determination of the many individuals who have fought to maintain the autonomy and diversity of community, often through physical, yet non-violent, resistance. The community's greatest defense has been the tireless virtue of the events, festivals, and clubs it organises. Remarkable simply for its existence, Metelkova is a refreshing break from the overwhelmingly homogeneous,clean and prim European atmosphere of Slovenia's capital; perhaps the only space that feels truly 'urban' in the city.