Ubik-baita | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián


A cross-cutting and inclusive perspective

  • Year: 2016 > 2018

Medialab has a library specialised in contemporary art and thought (previously called Ubik) where part of Tabakalera's cultural project is also developed. It has a public vocation in the broadest sense of the concept and seeks to reach those who find it most difficult to include an art centre and all that it can offer them in their routines.

The Tabakalera creation library opened its doors in March 2016, but by then it had travelled a path that it used as a foundation for the activities and sub-projects that would help make a reality the inclusion of the highest number possible of groups of people in the library, in particular those that find it most difficult to make the library part of their “day-to-day”.

Ubik-baita is the cross-cutting project that covers all aspects and specific programmes that on a day-to-day basis help make Ubik an inclusive library, a library by and for all citizens.

In 2016 and 2017 Ubik launched three projects in collaboration with different organisations:

  • Zorroaga Foundation: Together with our colleagues from Tabakalera Education, we developed a project on “non-places” through audiovisuals and have brought the library closer to the elderly who have difficulty in leaving their place of residence.
    There is more information and graphic material on the project, here.

  • Aita Menni: from making a stop motion animation, to self-publishing a recipe book, we seek to include the library in the skill building activities with the people assisted through the Brain damage service.

Its video “Viva San Mennín”, is still one of the best animation projects that have been developed here by non-professionals.

  • Cáritas Gipuzkoa: offering the library to homeless people so that they can discover it and recognise it as a space that also belongs to them. The participants decided to create the blog nubedeideas.eu, where they talk about life on the streets in their own words.

These projects and the line of inclusive work that continued to be developed through “Ubik-Baita”, were presented to the “Library and Social Commitment Award 2017” of the Social Library Foundation, where they received a special mention from the judges. 

In 2018 we developed two new projects:

  • The Radio Kaletika project: this is the continuation of the blog project Cloud of Ideas, which we ran in 2016/2017 together with Cáritas Gipuzkoa. The aim is to share doubts about what it means to live on the street, as well as other related topics of interest, through a radio programme. Kaletika = Kalea (street) + Etika (ethics). The radio programme was recorded in Tabakalera's library and all the podcasts published to date can be found here: Kaletika.

  • Garagune Easo: in collaboration with Garagune Easo of the Goyeneche Foundation, we have worked on a book detailing experiences in plastic arts and experimentation. More information can be found in this post: Valuing effort and validating works of art makes people visible. 

You can also watch a video summary of the project here: https://vimeo.com/275674579

In May 2020, the ALA (American Library Association) in its international programme “2020 Best Practices from World Libraries Photo Gallery”, recognised this project to highlight “the importance of libraries in promoting social justice and inclusion in society”. The project was presented under the title “A book of experiences: expressing daily life through the plastic arts”.

You can see all the projects that won awards here: https://sites.google.com/view/icc-programs/2020-photo-gallery