Hip-Hip Atelier is another contemporary art space that hatched in this fruitful area (check the Ladies Market and the Disintegrating Sofia articles). So far it has held a few events, but I love this place most for the big blue lady, left on the wall from the opening collaboration with the Italian artist DEM. The furniture, as with the whole place, is also designed by the owners.
The ambition of the place is to be less of a “museum” and more of a meeting space. To that end they recently opened the Hip Hip library – the first public collection of fan zines and self-publications dedicated to art in Bulgaria, where you can find (and buy) local as well as international specimens. I cannot express what an exotic bird this is on our scene, and you might be intrigued to check out their own “Blood Becomes Water” and other Bulgarian magazines. “Samizdat” I borrowed from the Soviet-style abbreviation for ‘self-publishing’, pertaining to dissemination of literature banned or ignored by establishment.
Hip Hip still have to come to terms with their working time, so if you’re not in the area, do call in advance. Check their facebook for current events. Their curatorial concept also is “open call” for all artists, the challenge – that the artist should live and work in the place. So if you have a pitch, you might as well stay around.
Currently the atelier is hosting an exhibition of book illustrations as part of the NE festival for experimental art.