Prague gallery transforms into social experiment flat

Czech Republic: Prague Galerie NoD has opened a unique exhibit flat and—social experiment — this week, which will be available for the public to rent on Airbnb.

On Tuesday 5th March, the art gallery was transformed into a fully operational private flat furnished by the RAFANI artist collective, and it will be available for rent for locals or visitors to Prague, through the rental platform.

The project is a means of bringing the current public debate surrounding the impact of short-term rentals on the character of residential urban neighborhoods and on the availability of affordable housing to the forefront.

Galerie NoD art director and exhibition curator, Pavel Kubesa, said: “It probably is (one of) the very first projects that for a limited time period will convert a traditional white cube gallery space into real full-fledged apartment leasable on some online platform.”

Although the public are not be able to enter the flat, there will be a video art installation adjacent to its entrance, shot inside the apartment, which showcases the exhibition’s aesthetics.

Those who rent out the flat will also receive an unorthodox guide to Prague.

Meanwhile, the exhibition incorporates a platform for a discussion centring on the overall potential, social consequences, and limitations of the sharing economy.

The flat has a separate bedroom and a fully-furnished dining room, which accommodates four guests. A toilet, bathroom and kitchenette are accessible from the communal space.

Czech art group Rafani, which was founded in 2000, is behind this social experiment and has long been concerned with public space art. It also explores the structural concept of exhibitions, as well as with metaphoric possibilities of art as an instrument to drive important public discussions.

Kubesa said: “As an exhibition institution, we strive to create an intellectual environment and base for social criticism and dialogue. We are eagerly awaiting the response it will engender among the general public and the flat’s tenants, but also on the part of Airbnb Czech Republic.”

The platform for a discussion features a debate on the problems of the sharing economy, namely “platform capitalism” and gentrification of urban areas.

Figures including artists and representatives from the fields of economy, architecture and urban planning, local government and mediation web platforms, will take part in the discussion.

The flat can be hired through the Airbnb site for up to two nights here.

The exhibit runs through to April 10th. For more information, visit the website here.