La Tabacalera, not a surprising name for a former tobacco factory. Located in the working-class neighborhood of Lavapiés, the spacious 18th century building hosts one of the most vibrant social and creative centers of Madrid.
Home to an art workshop, a bicycle workshop and a community garden, the place doesn’t seem to have any set rules, protocoles or boss. The only frame is imagination and solidarity.
La Tabacalera is a social center that encourages direct citizen participation in the public sphere. According to their own definition, they aim at promoting the capacities of individuals in producing art, in taking part in social actions, in thinking critically and in spreading democratic ideas in society. They do not intend to discuss solely on Spanish concerns but include any means of expression instead. In short, they aspire to highlight the demographic, ethnic, and cultural complexities in living in a certain space at a certain time.
Anyone can come and contribute to the center. A motto that led to numerous cultural events and works such as concerts, exhibitions, debates, parties or film screenings.
If you’re a street art lover, you won’t be disappointed; the place is covered with graffiti and crazy sculptures.
All of these great events and creations are guaranteed a lot healthier than tobacco.