Premiering pop-up store and coworking space for creatives in the region
Pop-up Dom, 2012
Opened in 2012, Pop-Up Dom began as an experimental community/co-working space. It was created to be a haven for up and coming Slovenian entrepreneurial and design community to facilitate in networking, presenting and showcasing products, all the while hosting various education and cultural events. After many reprises (pop ups) at home and abroad, it mainly served as a platform to inform and connect creatives to other industries which eventually crystallized into the creative/coworking centre - Poligon.
Pop-up Dom has showcased over 100 designers and exposed Slovenian design to the world. Its legacy has so far permeated into and transformed the communities of its home, Balkans and Europe.
Home is where the heart is
Industrial and product designers from smaller countries are usually faced with making the decision between adapting to local infrastructures or migrating to a new environment that will provide the necessary investment for research and development. But what if one loves it where they are?
We set ourselves a challenging goal. We wanted to generate interest, to connect the top and bottom networks, and to educate and inspire future generations through an entirely communal platform. In hindsight, it may have been overambitious but inspiring nonetheless. A home was made entirely for Slovene products and services.
Most products remain unique pieces
Over a 100 designers initially signed up for the opening night, showcasing a long list of products. Over time, the community and space molded itself a unique vibe and work style and it was within this time we decided to focus on marketing. The forces of supply and demand were against us at home… it was time to go global.
Shelves by Jurij Lozić, Stol by Maša Ogrin and Tina Špat
Focus by Tilen Sepič
Only few make it to production line
Most of the products were not mass produced and were sold as unique pieces. This initially prevented us from having an online store. The products with tangibly higher demand were sold in assemblage, with the hopes of winding up one day on a production line and, through mass production and lower prices, reach their intended global customers.
Fortunately, during this period, the designers were validating their products and hustled on, with some bridging the gap between the industries, and others going on Kickstarter.
Lip pohištvo with Andraž Tarman and Gašper Premože
Lago with Nuša Jelenec
Start-Up dom: Learning the services for the whole product life cycle
Pop Up dom had over one hundred visitors per day. It attracted the curious general public, the majority being designers, etrepreneurs, developers and IT specialists. Besides being just a curiousity, we were introducing and implementing new economic solutions to the microeconomic environment in Slovenia. A merge eventually had to happen between the communication, design and production side with management and investment. This merger drastically improved quality of the content and improved sales and market reach.
From people to People
This holistic approach was also the birth of our service as People. This was our first office where we built a network of great individuals and started to co-work together on a daily basis. In the meantime we developed our own identity and started working on new projects with young Slovenian Start-ups. This was an important starting point.
FabLab & Oaza: Sharing is caring but who will pay the bills?
We built a digital fabrication laboratory dedicated to research and development. It offered a wide range of latest tools from 3d printers to arduinos. The whole concept had a different, more noble agenda. It strived for open-source, DIY, prototyping and democratizing tools. The availability is only possible if the knowhow is shared. Sadly, the department runs slow on good will because it's not funded. It's stuck in constant battle for survival. Searching for new jobs to continue its existence distances itself from core activity. This is a common problem in capitalism.
Only later on the results paid off. In collaboration with outside institutions and museums, exhibitions were held. The acquired knowledge was applied and spread to wider audiences. It helped the individuals but the lab is still struggling.
Last but not least, we showcased concepts in search for sustainable and affordable living. The main question we asked ourselves was: How can we grow food in our homes? Hydroponics seemed as a good solution to start with.
- 20/10/12 - 18/11/12 Ljubljana, Slovenia
- 28/11/13 - 23/12/13 Ljubljana, Slovenia
- 16/1/14 - 8/3/14 Venezia, Italia
- 8/4/14 - 13/4/14 Milano, Italia
- 1/8/14 - 31/8/14 Piran, Slovenia
- 26/9/14 - 5/10/14 Vienna, Austria
Poligon: Slovenia's first Creative Centre is born
The legacy continues in a new form. Weeks after Pop-up Dom was closed, we co-founded Slovenia's first Creative Centre - Poligon. The transition was seamless and the communities that formed there understand its foundation. Today, Poligon is an autonomous platform for non-profit and for-profit project development with an agenda to empower the self-employed and freelancers.