The Industriebrachenumgestaltung – ibug for short – is entering a new round and this year it is coming up with a premiere. In 2023, the urban art festival will take place in Leipzig for the first time. Starting from July 29, the former train yard (Reichsbahnausbesserungswerk/RAW) in the Engelsdorf district will become a canvas for regional, national, and international artists. After a two-week creative phase and the digitalization of all exhibits, the curious and art enthusiasts can experience a temporary exhibition on three festival weekends – from August 18 to 20, from August 25 to 27, and from September 1 to 3. A colourful festival programme is planned, including guided tours, artist talks, and music. There will also be offerings for school classes.
“This year, being in Leipzig is something very special for us,” explains Rahel Pötschke from the board of the ibug association, which is based in the trade fair city itself. “We gladly accepted the invitation to be part of the event series ‘The whole city as a stage.’ The old train yard in Engelsdorf is a multifaceted place where there is always something new to discover. We can’t wait to share it with the artists and our audience,” Pötschke continues.
The RAW was established in 1903 as a result of the planned construction of Leipzig Main Station and the associated relocation of many auxiliary facilities to clear the construction site. It served for decades under various state enterprises for the repair of steam locomotives, passenger cars, and freight wagons. With the end of the steam locomotive era, a new field of work emerged with the construction of freight wagons. Due to the reunification of Germany in 1990 and the railway reform in 1994, the facility gradually lost its significance and was on the verge of closure several times. Today, a private railway company still offers maintenance services for wagons in a part of the premises, but large parts of it lie idle or are rented out to others.
Creatives from all over the world come to Leipzig
Nearly 800 creatives from a total of 73 countries, including 262 from Germany and 56 from Leipzig alone, had applied for ibug 2023. Around 70 artists and collectives have now been invited to unfold themselves on the RAW premises and create a mix of genres between painting and graffiti, installations, sculptures, textile art, photography, and multimedia in interior and exterior spaces. Alongside ibug alumni and new faces from all over Germany, there will also be international guests again, from England to Italy, from Argentina to Israel, from Portugal to Georgia.
Visitors can expect a diverse mix of DJs, live acts, performances, and bands during the three festival weekends. Fridays will feature a lot of live music, including a focus on Hip-Hop on August 25. Saturdays will offer more electronic entertainment with various DJ sets and invite people to dance. Each weekend will conclude with a closing concert on Sundays.
Helping and Supporting
Before the festival can start, the festival grounds need to be prepared for creatives and the public. Therefore, during the next work session from July 14 to 16, interiors will be cleared and cleaned, and infrastructure will be set up and expanded. The festival team is still looking for enthusiastic support. Another work session is planned from July 28 to 30. Additionally, volunteers will be needed in the areas of construction and logistics for the setup and dismantling of the festival, as well as during the festival days as ushers, ticket personnel, at the bar and in the kitchen, or on the social media team. Those who want to help can contact [email protected] via email.
In July, a crowdfunding campaign will also take place to finance new ladders and scaffolding. This is intended to improve the working conditions for participating artists. In addition to the option of a free donation, there will also be various limited rewards, such as art prints from ibug artists or merchandise. More information about the crowdfunding campaign can be found online at https://www.99funken.de/ibug2023.
Between Industrial History and Art
Since the first ibug in 2006, the event has evolved into a globally renowned festival for urban art. Every August, a wasteland in Saxony is opened as a temporary exhibition. International artists focus on experimenting with genres, materials, and techniques, as well as the history and architecture of the wasteland. The ibug team has been recognized multiple times for its commitment, including the “PlusPunkt Kultur” award from the Federal Association of Cultural Child and Youth Education in 2010, the “So geht Sächsisch” ideas competition for tourism in Saxony in 2019, and the “Denkzeit Event” competition of the Saxon State Ministry for Science, Culture, and Tourism in 2020.
All information about ibug 2023 is available online at www.ibug-art.de
ibug 2023 is funded by the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony and the City of Leipzig as part of the 2023 theme year “Leipzig – The whole city as a stage.”
The Artists of ibug 2023:
Albin Uhlig (DE), Alva Moca (ES), André Schmidt (Leipzig), ANEL (GR), Arda (Dresden), ATEZ (IT), Benjamin Duquenne (FR), Bernhard McQueen – BRNZN (DE), bet.one_ds (Leipzig), Billy (UK), Bisser (BE), Blaqk (GR), BRAINFART – Nahuel, Bex, Facundo (CH), Brothers of Light (IL), Chiara Dahlem (DE), Dawal (FR), Dies Irae (DE), Dodici (NL), Dr. Yo (DE), DTA-Kollektiv (DE), EJSMONDT (PL), Element-Art (DE), Facio (AR), Florian Milker, Hannes Pogurzelsky & Robert Piehler (Leipzig), Fogeljunge (Leipzig), Freizeitgruppe Gestaltung (DE), Fritten Freddie (Hamburg), Frukty (RU), Gabs (BR), Gregor & Elias (Leipzig), IBIMS (DE), Infra (DE), Isakov (DE), Juliane Hoffmann (Leipzig), Kai Semor + Frederik (Köln), Kampus (PT), Uder&Schindl (DE/NL), Kathi und Oliver (AT), Keno Feros Dilkone (UA), Kori (RS), Lapiz (Hamburg), LPVDA (CH), Luke Carter (Leipzig), Magdalena Wiegner (DE), marija tiurina (NL/LT), Merny Wernz (UK), miezwars (Leipzig), naamlooozz (NL), Nasca (Berlin), Nikita Nomerz (RU), NNAMARI (NL), ODOUR ODESSA (DE), Oliver Bekiersz (DE), OMA Kollektiv – Oxana, Marie und Alisa (DE), Pati (UZ), PAY-Collective (Leipzig), Pietro Vitali, Mirko Dadich & Nicolò Andreatta (IT), Rmyr (Leipzig), Rootsen Sneeky (DE), Simon Schirmer (DE), Slava Ptrk (ME/RU), Structurals (CH), Thorsten Wohlfahrt (DE), Tina Chertova (GE), Tobias Hansel (DE), Tomislav Topic (DE), Vera Shirdina & Kirill Vedernikov (RU), Vladimir Abikh (RU), Waldstyle – Taher & Ilja (DE), Xuan (US)
At a Glance:
ibug 2023 – Urban Art Festival
August 18 – 20 / August 25 – 27 / September 1 – 3
RAW Engelsdorf (Werkstättenstr. 4, 04319 Leipzig-Engelsdorf)
Friday: 4 pm to 8 pm
Saturday/Sunday: 10 am to 8 pm
Beer garden on the festival grounds until 10 pm
Day ticket: 15 EUR / 10 EUR reduced
Family ticket: 30 EUR
(2 adults and a maximum of 3 children between 6 and 16 years old)
Supporter ticket: starting from 20 EUR
Admission is free for children up to 6 years old and disabled individuals with a disability degree of at least 50%.
Tickets are available for purchase online starting from August 1 at www.ibug-art.de