The Slovenia Times

Underground culture brought to life: ROG


Is the word ROG familiar to you? In case you are living in Ljubljana, you read it a couple of times every day for sure: On old bikes, the name of the former Yugoslavian bike producer is rattling around the city. After the breakdown of the state of Yugoslavia in 1991, also the factory situated on the Ljubljanica river in the city centre was left to decay.

In 2000, two big exhibitions were held in the ROG premises and in 2006, through an initiative of an interdisciplinary collective, the place was transformed in a cultural centre. It became open for all those working in the non-profit sector: artists, social and cultural organisations. Today it also hosts a dance studio and an indoor skate park.

The whole factory and its users are very orientated towards DIY culture, also the famous skate park has been built only by hand and only with the motivation of many skaters, bladers and BMXers. Also the energy supply is not provided by the city, but by a private power plant. The community is strong and the bonds of the people using ROG for cultural and other activities are strong.

The municipality already considered closing down the factory and tearing down the buildings due to various reasons a few times. But like the troubles with Metelkova, the other alternative and open space in Ljubljana, the plans of the municipality did not get realized.

Visiting the old factory is definitely worth the time: there are concerts nearly every week, you can talk with all the artists on eyelevel while watching them working or just sneak in to experience the very special vibe of the place.


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