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21.04.2021

Diversity in the District. A Neighbourhood Walk Around Gasteig Sendling

Diversity in the District. A Neighbourhood Walk Around Gasteig Sendling A visit to Hall C. This collage was created as part of a long-term photo project by the Münchner Volkshochschule about the Gasteig’s move to Sendling. Helmut Wegmeth

We start our visit with future neighbours in an old industrial building that once housed an armature winding works. Complex coils for machines were made and wound here, some of which still adorn the bare corridors. Today, the building houses studios, offices, rehearsal rooms and workshops, spread over several floors. Our first appointment is awaiting us on the third floor.

Fred Krueger works with multi-layered oil on wood

Layer upon layer:
Sendling painter Fred Krueger


Fred Krueger’s 20 square metre »cubbyhole« is filled to the brim with pots of paint and objects of art that he has created here in the course of about 15 years. Children’s furniture, archery targets and even hand grenades find a creative use in his work.

His views of the place?
The threat I initially felt from the Gasteig moving here has now given way to a feeling of being on guard only for a time. Corners like this are becoming rarer and rarer in the ever neater Munich. The effort that has been put into the move gives reason to hope that our premises will continue to exist in the long term. I’m not a stick-in-the-mud, it’s going in the right direction.

What’s the neighbourhood like?
I was born 1.5 km from here as the crow flies, and like someone from the middle ages, I stuck around. The spirit of this place is unique because it has grown naturally and the people here are so diverse. I enjoy exchanging ideas with them or drop my car and bicycle off at the garage. It’s not as tight-knit as a residential community, but perhaps that’s due to my solitary nature, here in the seclusion of my ivory tower.

His vision becomes reality: Clemens Bachmann is looking forward to the neighbourhood mix.

Looking forward to the experiment with the Gasteig:
Architect Clemens Bachmann

Move out because the Gasteig is coming? No, the coexistence of the area’s current tenants and the Gasteig should not be a problem! In search of a common solution, the team around Clemens Bachmann sat down for a weekend and just spun visionary ideas. Looking back, it seems almost a miracle to the architect: their idea and concept met with approval and are now being implemented, albeit in a modified form, right on his doorstep.

What keeps you motivated?
It would be such a shame if an area like this came to an end while they try to artificially create a similar mix somewhere else. The attraction lies precisely in the combination: compared to the large Gasteig, we tenants here are small and heterogeneous: the artists, the carpenter, the percussion duo among us; a bit like the spice in a hotpot. But there are many points of contact and things will emerge that we can’t even imagine yet. I see the whole thing as an exciting experiment that will have incredible appeal beyond the region, because it has grown of its own accord.

How’s it going with the building site on your doorstep?
Great! I look down all the time. It’s very exciting and we’re on good terms with the site manager, who has also shown us around the site. Inside the Philharmonic Hall, the panelling is already in place. There’s already the smell of concert hall. The oil tanks that were here several years ago are being replaced by culture. And in Hall E, large transformers used to be repaired; the railway tracks on which they were transported are staying. I think this incredible change is great: that the architecture of a site like this survives with its use changing over the years. What’s also interesting is to see what will happen here after the Gasteig. The new cultural quarter should definitely stay.

Do you have an insider tip?
The location is simply great. In summer we often pop down to the Isar for a swim in our lunch break. The Flaucher beer garden is not far away – only about a ten-minute walk from here. Now the Gasteig is bringing culture and gastronomy into the mix, which will be wonderful. We were grateful to move here six years ago and plan to stay for a long time to come!

A tyre change at Senjak takes five minutes.

Tyres are high-tech! Tyre dealer Dominik Senjak

Right inside the Gasteig interim premises, Dominik Senjak runs a tyre business. In more than 15 years, his business has grown from a tiny tyre service to a full-service provider complete with tyre storage. To make room for the Gasteig, the driveway and office were converted, but there is still room enough for a small children’s corner with cinema seating. Here, we get drinks from the vending machine, plenty of time to talk and yet more tips.

What is your art?
Understanding tyres. Tyres are high tech; there’s a lot to them!

Your stage?
My team works on two levels here in the workshop, where we change tyres and balance or wash them. At peak times, the cars are queuing up. Our tyre storage space holds about 700 customers’ tyres.

What are your hopes for when the Gasteig moves in? 
What’s important to me is that the space in this brilliant area will be sufficient for all of us in the future. My customers are used to coming here spontaneously, without appointment, so it must be quick; cars shouldn’t have to queue. Personally, I’m looking forward to our new neighbours, the cultural gain, the coexistence of different trades and the intermingling that takes place here. I’ve even had people here to see if the workshop could be used as a stage. Well, yes, why not?

Your future as a neighbour of the Gasteig?
I already know some of the people from the Gasteig. By sheer coincidence, I once recognized a musician on stage who was a customer. Of course I will be a regular guest. My garage is only a stone’s throw from the new concert hall.




Interviews and text by Maria Zimmerer
Photos: Benedikt Feiten

In this follow-up episode we meet a few artists from the studios of House F.

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