Cyklopen is a self-built and self-managed cultural and social space in Högdalen, Stockholm. The house is managed as an urban common, and strives for more democratic ways to share and distribute resources, space and knowledge.
The house is managed through open assemblies that takes place every third week. If you want to become active please email [email protected] or attend our Open Saturdays that takes place monthly, where we work with the space and also have an introductionary meeting.
DURING COVID-19 we have closed for bigger public activities.
If you want us to give a lecture/workshop about the house please email [email protected] We are happy to tell about the house, but if youre from an institution/municipality we want you to consider that even if everyone works with the house on a volunteerly basis managing the house costs and you should try to pay as much as possible. If youre a student we encourage you to first read about the house, and also to think about how to find formats for mutual cooperation.
We have a long-lasting, transformative period of time ahead of us. No matter what will end up happening in the coming few weeks, the world will never be the same. We are simultaneously facing a serious challenge and a great opportunity, but also a question well worth asking: Should those already owning almost everything end up owning even more, or are there alternative ways of managing and allocating our resources?
It is a sad fact of life that we cannot trust the state with the task of protecting those who are already at risk. The people who were already outside of the labor market to begin with, or who never ended up with the luxury of a first-hand contract, know intuitively that aid packages will never be formulated with them in mind. Things are no different for those spending their days working in restaurant kitchen, only to come home coming home to overcrowded apartments. At the same time, slumlords and ruthless real estate companies continue to reap giant profits, never stopping to ask themselves whether their assets left empty thanks to rent hikes instead could be put to use for those left with no roof over their head. It was only last week we witnessed the police evicting a large group of EU migrants from their camp in the nearby Högdalen forest – right in the middle of an accelerating pandemic.
In a situation like this, we, the activists of Cyklopen, couldn’t imagine doing anything else than continue keeping the door open to our house – as a space for organizing, for comfort, and for unity. We continue to insist on the potentiality of culture and art as means of imaging alternative ways of organizing space, cities, and societies. At the same time, we have no choice but to adapt to the current situation, which is why we are putting all our regular activities on hold for the coming few week.
Ever since we started putting our efforts into the Cyklopen project back in 2003, our work has taught us what mutual aid is capable of really building, far beyond the limitations enforced by the state and by capital. This practical form of solidarity exists in the very DNA of our building, and the fact that we have managed to create not one but two social centre is a testament to this. Observing our current situation, it is glaringly obvious that this solidarity is crucial not only for transcending the limits of traditional politics, but also for our survival. It is obvious in every act of helping out with groceries for our neighbors. It is obvious in how babysitting is already being jointly organized. It will have to start become obvious all over, in every activity encompassed by the politics of everyday life.
We will put this pausing of activities in the social centre to good use. We will join all the others already active in spreading the solidarity already growing in the Stockholm suburbs. But we will also use the time to again consider the potential power of our house, now and forwards. We are determined to care for Cyklopen as a seed for social change, and as a place open for the missteps necessary for treading a path towards new, collective experiences and insights. Cyklopen is a resource for a city that is coming, where people, not profits, are at the forefront.
Since its founding, Cyklopen has never accepted any sort of permanent support from the state or other organizations. We are used to finding sustainable ways of running our centre, we are nevertheless no exception to others when it comes to the financial effects of putting things on hold. However, if we could work out a system of solidarity subscriptions – allowing those who are able to to transfer a given sum each month – this would greatly improve our capacity for collective readiness for the future.
Please visit http://www.cyklopen.se/stodmedlem/ and fill in the sum you feel comfortable contributing (at least 50 kr) each month. Doing a one-time solidarity transfer is possible as well. And we promise you, that once the Covid-19 threat is over, this will surely be celebrated by us throwing a big party!
If you are a member of a political network or cultural society that’d like to link up with us, we’d love for you to get in touch. Of course, this goes for those of you who’d like to join us in making possible a social centre powered by independence and volontary effort.