The Slovak Center of Visual Arts (SCVU) and the Kunsthalle Bratislava (KHB) were established as an outcome of the pursuit of particular artists and theorists as well as the broader cultural public to create a representative exhibition space in the center of Bratislava. The mission of SCVU and KHB is to survey, document and mediate contemporary visual art to national and international audience. While structurally similar institutions from different fields of culture (such as the Slovak Design Center, the Music Center Slovakia, the Theatre Institute, the Slovak Film Institute, the Center for Information on Literature) have been in active operation for decades, there was a lack of an institution that would systematically collect information on visual art.
The Kunsthalle Bratislava is a contemporary art gallery with no collection that exhibits national and international visual art. It is located in the centre of Bratislava at Dom umenia (House of Arts, SNP Sq. 12). Space of approximately 1700 sq. meters includes as well Kunsthalle LAB with a separate street entrance and the Kunsthalle KLUB on the ground floor. Because the local general public often considers visual art incomprehensible, KHB strives to make it approachable though a new experimental form of communication based on participation – trained art mediators are ready to unveil visual art to our audience. The local mission of the Kunsthalle Bratislava is to make visual art accessible to the general public. In terms of its international aims, the Kunsthalle Bratislava focuses on highlighting Slovak visual art through systematic networking with major partner institutions abroad.
The Kunsthalle LAB is a window gallery that communicates with passer-byes through window displays. LAB’s mission is to present interactive, site-specific projects that use light and sound, provoke active participation of audience and communicate towards the public space of a busy square while disturbing the traditional notion of contemporary art as a solely “artistic” discipline. Along to presenting publications on contemporary art, the program of LAB is based on a dynamic model of short-term exhibitions.
The Kunsthalle KLUB operates in the premises of the V-klub and mediates contemporary visual art through curatorial series of lectures, discussions, projects, seminars, conferences and educational programs. Children visitors can participate in activities under Kunsthalle KIDS.
Founded as the Slovak Center of Visual Arts (SCVU), the Kunsthalle Bratislava is an organizational part of the National Culture House (Národné osvetové centrum), established by the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic (MKSR).