Leipzig is an old industrial city and when Germany was reunified in the 1990s, many of the old industrial buildings were abandoned. Now a city of art and creativity – with many people flocking to Leipzig to start up their own creative ventures – Leipzig’s industrial buildings have been given a new lease of life. With their red-brick and industrial charm, many of these buildings are now locations where Leipzigers undertake artistic work. Here we take a look at some of Leipzig’s most iconic industrial buildings that are now cultural hotspots.
Neues Schauspiel Leipzig
An old printing house in an idyllic setting on Lützner Straße, Neues Schauspiel Leipzig was creatively renovated and opened in 2010. The quaint rooms of this throwback to Leipzig’s industrial history has been transformed into a cultural hub for people of all ages. There’s a regular events calendar of theatre performances in German and English, as well as improv performances, concerts and quirky puppet shows. The bar on-site – Theaterbar Tante Manfred – is a cosy spot for a glass of wine by candlelight too.
The Box in the old Plagwitz Station
On a location that was once Europe’s largest freight yard, the former train station building on Engertstraße is now a small space for a range of creative arts. The Box (Die Box) has a colourful programme of events, ranging from concerts and dance performances, to theatre and readings. For an alternative twist on modern Leipzig culture, there is also a puppet theatre.
Horns Erben pub
The location of this popular pub is on the site of the wine bar of Leipzig’s iconic Schnapps producer, Wilhelm Horn. From 1927, Horn produced his well-known spirits in the city and served them here in his wine bar on Arndtstraße. In 2004, four Leipzig students decided to breathe new life into the historic premises. Today, Horns Erben is a trendy pub that blends modern with retro, with rustic wooden furniture, quirky wall coverings and vintage armchairs and lampshades. A popular hotspot in southern Leipzig, there is also a regular calendar of concerts, readings and parties hosted here, as well as performances by the theatre group Adolf Südknecht.
This building dating back to the 1870s has a stunning historic ballroom and social hall that has seen decades of cultural festivities. The unique acoustics of the ballroom at Schaubühne Lindenfels have been particularly praised by Leipzig’s artistic residents over the decades. The cultural importance of the building lives on to this day, with theatre and dance performances regularly taking place here. There are also frequent film screenings, music, literature and visual arts exhibitions hosted on-site.
This former heating plant in the neighbourhood of Lindenau was previously home to huge coal stoves to heat water, which was delivered via pipelines to industrial plants across the west of Leipzig. This took place between 1964 and 1992, when a raft of boiler attendants and supervisors manned the boiler house to keep Leipzig’s industry ticking over. Nowadays Kunstkraftwerk is a hub of activity of another kind, with international exhibitions, symposiums, concerts, readings and gastronomy events taking place here and in the surrounding creative industrial spaces of the Spinnerei, Westwerk and Tapetenwerk.
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