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10 YEARS PDZ

>> ‘It is hard to imagine we’ve managed to get things moving in the way we did. We started from scratch.’ Ten years ago, Egbert Fransen and his partner Hester Tiggeloven were still running Cultuurfabriek, producing large scale change events for corporates, NGO’s and ministries, and organising summer theater festival Over het IJ Festival in Amsterdam-Noord. A space for corporate and private events by day and housing cultural or political programmes by night is something Fransen had been dreaming about for a long time. ‘It is something we wanted and we were offered opportunities before, but those collapsed for several reasons. Besides, we wanted to run our own space.’

THERE WAS JUST A BUILDING, AMBITION, IDEAS, AND A NETWORK

Paul Morel of Stadsherstel gives a tour in the building under construction, 2006

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Starting from scratch

Through vision and a stroke of luck, they were able to obtain a building at the river IJ and, after some renovations, immediately worked on renting out spaces, connecting people and producing cultural events. Tiggeloven recalls the early days: ‘We started organising get-togethers of people from our networks. showing them the renovation of the building. It was a joint venture with Paul Morel from Stadsherstel Amsterdam, which still is the owner of the building. Our tradition of the Tafel van 50 (a dinner with 50 guests at one long table) started there, with people eating mustard soup and salads in the building which was still under construction.’ In the beginning, there was no money, no real business plan, no partners, no funding. Just a building, lots of ambition and ideas, and a large network. Soon, weekly events started to be programmed at night: Women Inc., Groove Nights, Beamlab and the still running programmes >> What’s Up? and Talk of the Town - which indicated

Profile for Pakhuis de Zwijger

New Amsterdam #10  

New Democracy | 10 years Pakhuis de Zwijger | Maakplaats 021 | FabCity Movement | Global Parliament of Mayors | Equal Access | Humans of Ams...

New Amsterdam #10  

New Democracy | 10 years Pakhuis de Zwijger | Maakplaats 021 | FabCity Movement | Global Parliament of Mayors | Equal Access | Humans of Ams...

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