Repurposing Spaces

Pickle Factory is particularly invested in repurposing unused and defunct spaces and turning them into vibrant hubs for the arts. Each space we inhabit becomes a pop-up venue, bringing together atmospheric and inspiring space, imaginative art and artists, and exciting conversations and ideas. We have worked in burnt out cinemas, converted apartment studios, rooftop spaces, television studios and more. Many of these hosted live performance for the first time.

Our big dream is to set up and run a permanent venue, housed in a repurposed space in the architecturally textured fabric of Calcutta – transforming our experience of both architecture and movement. 

During Widening Circles: Pickle Factory Season 2, we hosted a series of focussed conversations to imagine such a venue for Calcutta. The discussions were led by Christophe Knoch (Berlin) and Sharvari Sastry (Mumbai).

  • Session 1 – Offbeat CCU, a hotel converted into a venue for original music.
    • Surveying the range of alternative arts spaces in various cities in India
    • a glimpse into ways in which old and defunct industrial spaces are being repurposed for the arts in Europe
  • Session 2 – a walking tour through the old Port Area.
    • Envisioning the crumbling structures of the large workshops and go-downs as rejuvenated and vibrant art hubs
    • Imagining the impact this could have on the social, economic and cultural life of the city.
  • Session 3 – Ranan Workspace where Pickle Factory is based
    • a brainstorming and planning session for the weekend roundtable
  • Weekend Roundtable – Seagull Bookstore and Janus Centre for Visual and Performing Arts
    • Discussing how repurposed arts spaces may be created and sustained in Kolkata, with the active involvement of local communities, artists and administrative organisations
    • Consolidating a working team and network of advocates and ambassadors of the idea