What is CIKE?

CIKE is made out of people who want to get Košice to the level of other progressive European cities. They create space for new opportunities and write successful stories.

CIKE has the experience

  • with big international projects such as The European Capital of Culture 2013 and UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts
  • with creating the main strategy for the development of cultural and creative industry in Košice since its foundation 10 years ago,
  • with managing innovation

CIKE has the tools,

thanks to which it creates connections between skilled people who then contribute to the development of our city. We do this by:

  • creating local and international collaborations
  • sharing and getting the ‘know-how’
  • having a shared strategy

CIKE is here for

  • people from the cultural and creative industry
  • the emerging and also established business owners
  • students
  • professional partners who want to innovate
  • those, who want to invest their know-how into the development of Košice

Success stories

Once you incubate, you can become independent

Projects which are developed under the umbrella of a larger organisation have the potential to become independent and operate more efficiently even afterwards. For example, K.A.I.R.- Kosice Artist in Residence become independent as well as the festival White Night. They were both at one time one of the key projects of the ECoC – the European Capital of Culture. In order to fully exploit their potential, they now operate as independent local cultural entities with their own capacities.

Project K.A.I.R. has been undergoing an incubation phase over a number of years, during which the structure, objectives, network of partners, funding and the like have been set. In five years, we have managed to create a diverse and stable network of partners in the European Union, but also in Ukraine, Georgia and Japan. It is important for CIKE and the City of Košice to support and create a network of independent cultural entities and to separate from incubated projects.

How to find clients right after school

She was not afraid of a big company with a long tradition and its focus, which at first glance would not be very appealing to a fresh design school graduate. Mária Bujňáková applied for the Creativity for Business challenge and as a successful candidate, she took part in an art residency at restaurant Ryba Košice. Her residency focused on the concept of visual communication and she created gift items for the 70th anniversary of the Ryba Košice company. The result of her work was, for example, a business card stand from a wooden base and a sliding aluminium part in the shape of a fishtail or a piece of jewellery – an aluminium fishtail on a silver-coloured cord. Watch the video from her residency.

Organic, random and spontaneous = Robin Street Food hotdogs

Young architect Danka Bodnárová has decided to start her own business in the gastro sector, as according to her, food improves mood and takes you away from reality. In addition, her goal was to connect and build the community. As part of the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme, she focused on marketing, branding and brand development as well as her relationship with new customers. During her Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs exchange, she designed the concept of street food. Her host entrepreneur warned her about the regular operational and practical mistakes and advised her hotdogs are the best kind of street food to run.

Robin Street Food hotdogs – Danka’s company – don’t follow any stereotype. Instead of mustard and ketchup, you get a combination of honey and grapefruit and experience an unforgettable gastronomic experience thanks to seasonal ingredients. Over time, Danka managed to develop from an amateur company into a professional gastro company and today she takes part in big events and festivals. At the same time, she remains creative and has already had a vernissage with a limited edition of boxes with drawings from regular customers who are less than 140 cm tall.

Opening of the first artetherapeutic centre in Košice

Linda van Dalen had a goal. Meet important people from the sphere of artetherapy, learn about their work, introduce her project to them and build a network. All this to create her own artetherapy centre CHAT – Creative Healing Art Therapy. It is the first centre of its kind in the Košice region. It was opened in January 2015. Linda develops her own therapies and thanks to this, her ChillArt courses are booked in advance. She works with toddlers during BabyChat classes, deals with children in the Rubicon autistic centre and also does artetherapy for adults.

In addition to participating in Escalator, Linda also went on an exchange through Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme and took part in other CIKE training workshops. CHAT began to flourish even more since relocating to new and larger premises.

Košice IT Valley rebranded by 18-year old Adam Rybák

To find new talents, to provide them with new perspectives and to encourage them to come up with new solutions has proven to be very successful for CIKE. In 2017, on the occasion of the 10th anniversary of the Košice IT Valley, we created an assignment to rebrand a brand for promising graphic designers. Together we chose student Adam Rybák to create a new visual identity. As a mentor, we have chosen experienced graphic designer Martin Jerkovič, who has worked on major international campaigns for companies such as Nike, VISA and UBER. The result of this cooperation was a new take on the Košice IT Valley brand which also brought it closer to the younger generation through a new design. In addition to the valuable experience and expanding his portfolio, the student also went on a trip to the world-renowned WebSummit conference in Lisbon thanks to Košice IT Valley.

SAC curates the biggest mural gallery in Slovakia

In the time of many street art projects, only a few are worth mentioning. There are many issues that come with them. Viktor Feher gained his experience in the field of visual arts in public space in Poland. Today, Košice is a dot on the world map of street art.

Viktor went to Łódź through our Mobility programme. The choice of this city was deliberate and essential for the development of the Street Art Communication project in Košice. Viktor was inspired by the Galeria Urban Forms project on the facades of local buildings and brought monumental paintings from the greats of contemporary world muralism to Košice. Follow in Viktor’s footsteps.

Go on a tour of Košice’s Open Mural Gallery (OMG).

Where can you find freedom and democracy?

It was founded in 2014 by the Azimut civic society led by Mirka Rybárová and Slavo Stankovič, who, while living most of their lives in a democracy, refuse to forget about the times of non-freedom. They decided to join forces in defending the principles of democracy and freedom and joined the Escalator programme with the motto Do not let absurdity destroy humanity. The Matrioshka Festival is a multi-genre event taking place over one week, aimed at bringing the absurdity, crime and realities of the totalitarian regime in Czechoslovakia 1948-1989 closer to us.

From an idea to a six-day festival

In the beginning, there was the question of what if, a few months from now, there was a week-long celebration of media arts, technology and digital culture. The Art & Tech Days has since expanded to seven different locations, thanks to the collaboration with DAAVS. Together, we introduced a progressive generation of multimedia artists who portrayed contemporary media art in the V4 context.

In Košice, we played the tunes of Nenada Branković and Boris Sirka while Gábor Kristóf, Boris Vitázek, Michal Mitro and Ľuboš Zbranek exhibited their work. We also had the opportunity to watch VJ Symposium with VJ London and HRTL line-up and seven live choreographic installations from the Ziggurat Project along with Nano VJs visualisations. Panáčik (SK) and the newcomer Fjordmos (CZ) went on stage in Tabačka.

International representatives of digital culture in Košice

Prezi, Ubisoft, Porto Design Factory, Ars Electronica and many others in Košice as part of the Art & Tech Conference 2017 to experience the mix of art, technology and digital culture. As the main organiser, together with Košice IT Valley, we carefully select and introduce people who are continuously developing the creative industry.

Joshua Newnham (UK), the director of design technology at Method, UX expert Zsuzsi Kovács (HU), Claudia Schnugg (AT), the creative process facilitator in the Sparks Residential Programme at Ars Electronica, gaming consultant Stephan Assadourian (CA) or Canal180 executive producer Luis Fernandes (PT) shared their valuable know-how in the sphere of machine learning. More about the current year on atdays.sk.

How to get 20-year experience in a few months

In early 2018, in collaboration with the Woont production studio, we launched a series of workshops for young talented photographers to get them to a professional level. It is a valuable practical lesson unparalleled in the ordinary academic environment in Slovakia. Mentors shared their 20-year experience with the Photo Academy participants to accelerate and streamline their professional growth.

They learned to work with light, communicate with clients, and consult their work with professionals. They had access to a studio, professional technology available for rent and they worked with professional models or make-up artists. Photo Academy teaches how to better understand the client’s needs and deliver quality results to the end customer. This successful programme has given new photographers, in many cases, still students, an experience that they could only get through long-term practice.

Escalator people are hard-workers

They work hard, learn how to think innovatively, look at things from a different perspective, accept criticism and get to know amazing people.

Escalator is an annual educational programme for individuals and organisations from the cultural and creative sectors.

You can watch the video from Onomatopoje and see how (difficult) it is to do culture in Slovakia and how people thrive during Escalator.

Opre’ Cider is a quality product from Košice

Gabriel Oprendek first imported cider home from his travels around the world. Later he began experimenting with his own production. Over time, the Oprendek brothers came up with the right formula and founded Opre’ Cider, which by crafting quality products contributed to the emergence of cider culture in Slovakia. Gabi went on an exchange through our Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme. His host was a family business which connects tradition with cider innovation in Spain, the Basque and Asturias regions, where the cider has its own 2000-year tradition and distinctive sour style. The cider culture in Slovakia was the exact opposite of the Spanish one. Not only was the cider not produced here, but there was also no demand for it, and people barely knew what it was. That is why Gabi had to consult much more complex issues. He travelled to get to know the cider culture and tradition that is completely different all around the world. His cider has become very successful in Slovakia and its distribution roots reach Prague.

Later, he expanded his menu to include other premium products – honey and herb-based Mellos lemonades, which began to overtake the original cider product market. Now her owns 2 successful local products that not only enjoy popularity, but their range is constantly expanding with new flavours.

Gastronomy is also part of creative industry

Martin Jakub from KubBo Select decided to get to know local production in Bilbao. He focused his attention on working with craft products. Bilbao caught his interests mainly thanks to the quality and viability of local production. At KubBo Select, they show how local products are made, why they are unique and how they are separated from other products. They organise tasting sessions, festivals and media campaigns. All this in order to spread awareness about the benefits of buying craft products. Bilbao was an ideal place for Martin, as it is now known for its small family production as well as for the gastronomy sector and food festivals.

Moreover, Bilbao is also a city with a very pleasant amount of Michelin-star restaurants per capita and knows how to promote and sell local products to the entire world. Thanks to CIKE, Martin has been inspired to further develop KubBo Select.

A space for quality career development

Thanks to the programme Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs, a young entrepreneur from Sweden came to Slovakia. Through CIKE, the Swede Malte Leifsson and Ján Sudzin from Hevhetia, a publishing house in Košice, were brought together. Aside from publishing books and releasing music, this house also organises festivals for artists whose works they publish. Over the past 15 years, they have released more than 170 music titles and now they want to expand their field of activity behind the borders.

Hevhetia is a low-cost publishing house, so Malte could see first-hand how a business with non-commercial music works in its naked form. Malte dreams of becoming a composer, musician, or music teacher. As he himself says, he could draw on the experience he gained in the Košice studio even if he became a musician, event manager or publisher. However, he first wanted to build on this experience during his studies.

MusicLab improves the music scene in Košice

There was no public place in Košice for improvising before the emergence of MusicLab. They signed up for Escalator to decide what’s next. Thanks to courses in Pleiades, Berlin, and one-on-one meetings, they understood the issues of finance, the fundamentals of marketing, and the important role played by internal processes. For several years now, Fabricafe regularly hosts public jams. Together with the rehearsal, music experiments, community, and various educational activities, this has defined what MusicLab is. Some musicians, such as Chris Ellys, Wandererove segry, Yektal or Kurkus, who started or trained at MusicLab, have become popular also outside of Košice and started to perform independently.

MusicLab not only helps create music but also improves the environment and connect musicians.

A hotel that does not exist but still has regular customers

The Invisible Hotel is a brand new concept of accommodation, only to be found in Košice. It consists of 5 design rooms designed by local artists and located at several different locations in partner hotels. The idea behind this project is to uncover the hidden places in the city through the design of the rooms itself, The Invisible Mag online magazine or the local City Cracker book guide.

Part of the accommodation experience is the unique Welcome Pack that awaits every guest in their room. Its content is a curatorial selection of handicraft products from local manufacturers and free tickets to traditional and more “hip” institutions. The guest has a tailor-made programme and a local guide available on phone. The Invisible Hotel is a selection of the best things the city has to offer. It introduces people, places, experiences and supports the local economy.

The foundations of the new circus in Košice were laid by Ariadna Vendelová

Rough hands, bruises, scorched skin, dislocated shoulder, jumped rib versus lightness, beauty, femininity and poetics. A single photo was enough to inspire the imagination of Ariadna Vendel during her study stay in America. Dancing on some equipment in the air seemed like a crazy thing to do. For her, it was a completely new kind of creative movement.

She joined Escalator on the recommendation of other participants and with an important question of her own time management or limit of activities which did not help her to complete her vision. In Košice, she started from scratch because there was no platform for aerial acrobatics or modern circus. She didn’t join our CIKE programme with a very clear project, but she did have a strong desire to further develop the activities of Ariadnina Niť. Today she has at least a hundred followers and makes at least another hundred very proud of her! She is currently in charge of the La Lyra Company performance group and her vision is to create a centre of aerobatics.

Ariadne gives a platform, experience, know-how to girls and inspires them that if a person works with passion, sincerely and unselfishly, it will change the world.

The modern bistro Pán Ryba has been refurbished by artists

Ryba Košice received twice the portion of creativity in half a year. Two residents, Mária Bujňáková and Viktor Fehér, have realised their projects there. Viktor Fehér, the second artist, is known for his SAC and Pyecka Gallery projects. In addition, he is an experienced chef and this challenge brought him the opportunity to link his experience in art and gastronomy. His vision was to create a bistro with an open kitchen where you can eat fast and well. Viktor has developed the concept of a modern bistro with a fresh fish and seafood store, which will also have an educational character with a focus on healthy food and seafood. To this end, Viktor has undergone a tour of similar establishments in Budapest. After his residence, Ryba bistro started remodelling according to the proposed design and today it is a modern bistro on Mlynská Street, in which traditional products such as Treska are served in an unconventional form.

Kino Úsmev is the first art house cinema in Košice

Cinefil, a civic association, has worked hard for many years to reopen the famous cinema Kino Úsmev. Its new form is nostalgic for many and for Košice, it serves as a new space for both art cinema and premiere of new films. Cinefil has managed to create a city cinema our of Kino Úsmev with the goal of making it a centre of audiovisual culture. At the same time, it has been part of our development programme Escalator for several years. The director of the cinema, Lukáš Berberich, went on a residency stay to Bilbao through our Mobilities programme, during which he also attended the San Sebastián Film Festival, where he collected inspiration for Kino Úsmev, the first art house cinema in Košice.

We do art on an international level

KAIR – Košice Artist in Residence is an international programme for cross-boundary exchanges of artists from all over the world and from all artistic disciplines. It was established in 2011 as one of the key activities of the European Capital of Culture, and in 2016 it became independent with its new space.

Today it operates internationally. KAIR gives artists the opportunity to work in Košice’s inspiring environment with a unique cultural background to realise their art projects, work with an active local art scene and present themselves to the local and national public. They provide accommodation, access to a studio, financial and production support in Košice.

KAIR is located in Šopa Gallery on Hlavná Street. Having their own space gives them the opportunity to exhibit the results of their work and organise events. One of them is Open Studios Night – a night of open studios, regularly accompanied by the arrival of new residential artists to Košice.

 

 

You can pay tribute to media art through a hotel room

The latest addition to The Invisible Hotel – five rooms at five different addresses – is a room dedicated to media art and digital technology in response to the current direction of art in Košice. It is located in an area of Košice saturated with media art and creative industry – in the vicinity of Strojárenská Street, opposite of the Tabačka Kulturfabrik. The authors of the room are Boris Vaitovič and Štefan Pacák. The interior of the room consists of several new media elements such as a sound wall, an interactive laser for sound control, a CMYK shadow, a hologram of the St. Elisabeth Cathedral or mechanical animation, which is connected to the door opening. An essential part of the experience is a custom app on a tablet that controls  the view.

Košice has become member of Creative Cities Network

Košice is the first Slovak city to become UNESCO Creative City (part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network) in the sphere of media art. They joined the club together with other 64 cities from around the world. Thanks to this, we now have a great opportunity to become more visible on a global level, develop international cooperation and create opportunities for creative people not only from Košice but also from all over Slovakia.

The application to the UNESCO Creative Cities Network was prepared by CIKE and we also proposed several key activities that convinced UNESCO that Košice deserves the title of Creative City. For example, we mentioned the creation of an urban game, or the appreciation of young artists from partner cities and founding of an open media art gallery in Košice. As a result of this title, CIKE organises each autumn Art & Tech Days festival culminating in a conference.

We are here for everyone who wants to improve our city

,,Thanks to the Escalator programme, we have learned the difference between the work of an independent artist, the grant support and the realisation of the client’s needs. As a company, we had no cash flow, planning, strategy, mission or vision. With help from mentors, we have learned the systematic steps that we gradually implemented into our practice. Later we started to professionally collaborate on projects like Carat or Foto Academy. We want to stay in Košice and help people.”

Ján Varchola

Woont

,,We were one of the first participants in the Escalator programme, which helped us with developing a business model and successfully opening the new Tabačka. We regularly participate in CIKE educational activities and conferences which help us with the development of our organisation. I would recommend working with CIKE to anyone who wants to learn and is not afraid to innovate. I think that even the representatives of municipalities and state-established cultural or social institutions could benefit from CIKE programmes.”

Peter Radkoff

riaditeľ Tabačky Kulturfabrik

 ,,We recommend CIKE to anyone who wants to learn something new and to those, who are interested in events in Košice and in the region. We work together on organising various events, training sessions and workshops. We have also been involved in the UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts initiative and we are co-organise the unique Art & Tech Days Conference. At the same time, we are networking and knowledge-sharing partners.”

 

Pavol Mirossay

výkonný riaditeľ IT Valley

,,I have been working with CIKE since 2012 on projects such as Creative Industry Toolkit, Generation 2020, CO.Create, but also as an educational expert. Thanks to CIKE, I went on a month-long residency to Belgrade which inspired me to start my own business. My collaboration with CIKE has always brought me benefits, whether in the form of valuable knowledge or new contacts. CIKE has a great advantage mainly due to its contacts within Europe and so, cooperation with it can be a great starter for your career.”

Braňo Frk

Öppus

“For three years, I took part in Escalator, thanks to which I have now opened CHAT, a successful and recognised art therapy centre. CIKE is not just for people from the creative industry, but for everyone, because we can be creative in different ways. Nor is it just for the daredevils, because when I signed up, I was not courageous. I have gained courage and strength during Escalator ❤️.”

Linda van Dalen

riaditeľka CHAT

“CIKE helps Košice by promoting it on an international level. We worked together on creating a cultural strategy, as well as key presentation and training events to support the media art zone. Thanks to this, we received the title of Košice – UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts and started preparing a new concept for Kunsthalle. They have a strong potential to influence the local climate of “creative industrialisation”. I recommend CIKE to the young generation of entrepreneurs and creative communities.”

Richard Kitta

riaditeľ DIG Gallery

Timeline

CIKE is made out of people who want to get Košice to the level of other progressive European cities. They create space for new opportunities and write successful stories.

Strategy for the city

Since 2008, CIKE has been the initiator of many changes. We have been involved in building a creative infrastructure, development of individuals, strengthening international contacts and making the city more visible. We have become a bridge between the public and private sector, the creators of vision. Thanks to CIKE, the number of organisations and companies that are able to operate on a professional level has increased significantly and has significantly contributed to the cultural transformation that the city has undergone in recent years. However, without strategic planning, this would not have been possible.

Creative Economy Master Plan has become our guide in this regard. This programme plan for a better city is deliberately ambitious, it looks ahead, identifies opportunities and clarifies how to remain the capital of culture for a long time.

Master plan 2013 - 2018

We have completed:
  • Escalator - intense mentorship educational programme
  • Creativity for Business - creative residency of an artists in a business sector
  • Art & Tech Days - festival or art, technology and digital culture
  • Conferences about creative and cultural industries
  • Audience Development - research and toold for audience development
  • UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts - membership in prestigious international network
We stood behind the birth and opening of:

A 10-year overview of creative and cultural industries, projects, challenges, finance and investments can be found in this strategic document created in 2013 for Košice.

Master plan 2019 - 2023

In progress

Michal Hladký

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Director
michal.hladky@cike.sk

Mišo has been contributing to Košice’s development since 2008. Together with his team, he has quite successfully created a strategy for developing creativity and culture. His ideas include the European Capital of Culture 2013, Masterplan 2020 and Košice UNESCO Creative City of Media Arts. No one really knows what Michal dreams about – hence, no one really knows how our city will look 10 years from now.

Jana Šargová

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Senior Project Manager
jana.sargova@cike.sk

Music theorist, professional dreamer and super manager = Janka. She was part of the team that stood behind the European Capital of Culture and she joined CIKE in 2017 in order to help Košice with obtaining the UNESCO title. Thanks to her, Košice will soon be a progressive European city that has a diverse culture and conscious inhabitants.

Ivana Hanušovská

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Financial manager
ivana.hanusovska@cike.sk

A financial superhero with the ability to raise her son while simultaneously creating budget tables. She manages to work with numbers and prepare birthday cakes for every member of the organisation with ease and precision at the same time. All the funds brace themselves when Ivana submits the project. After all, she is the kind of person that gets away with everything.

 

 

Michaela Halász

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Project manager
michaela.halasz@cike.sk

Michaela has an entire universe of tasks and she is motivated to establish functional collaborations within Košice. The case study of Miška is the perfect example of successful interdisciplinary innovation and cross-sector cooperation. She rides her horse to work and hides him in the imaginary stable of the Kulturpark.

Alexandra Juríková

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Project Manager
alexandra.jurikova@cike.sk

Alexandra, or Saša, is the most faithful employee of the organisation. She is a passionate avocado farmer and a qualified snowboard instructor. Her enthusiasm for CIKE is extremely contagious. Her work is accompanied by an orchestra of enthusiasm and fanfare of fulfilled KPIs. She works to gradually make Košice’s presence on the map more grandiose.

Zuzana Révészová

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Project Manager
zuzana.reveszova@cike.sk

One could say when looking at Zuzana’s CV that success is an obligation for her. She has become the Reseach Director at the National Research Center when she was only 27 years old. Since she missed the strong Košice wind, she returned with a clear goal in mind: to pursue cultural research in the city. Apart from the stationary shops she also enjoys her work with Spolka, or the place where “the meetings of girls become an entity that changes the city.”

Denisa Draganovská

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Project Manager
denisa.draganovska@cike.sk

Denisa, also known as Deni, is the fastest growing addition to CIKE. She has gained new experience quickly thanks to her keen commitment and empathy. Before coming to Košice, she did some work as a Project Manager in the USA while she was working with children. Highly effective and bright, she always knows how to lighten up the situation with a slow, but long clap. Deni is also the head of the CIKE children zone.

Ivana Ščuroková

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Assistant for Online Communication
ivana.scurokova@cike.sk

Ivanka from Bardejov takes care of CIKE’s external communication. She has learned about our organisation and the European Capital of Culture through a question she had at her graduation exam. Her strong nature and hard work allowed her to combine university studies with a demanding job. The master behind unbelievable stories is fascinated by libraries, bookstores, book institutes, people with books, walking people with books and bookshelves full of books.

Jana Olešáková

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Office Manager
jana.olesakova@cike.sk

She has been in CIKE almost since Košice held the title of the European Capital of Culture. Janka’s superpowers help her with managing administration that everyone else wants to stay away from. She makes a sense out of invoices and an old archive. Chocolate, but only with whole nuts, gives her the necessary energy to deal with the new GDPR dimension.

Ivana Varcholová

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Junior Financial Manager
ivana.varcholova@cike.sk

Ivka is an analyst and is one of those people who at 29 years old decided to step on the path of enriching and meaningful work. She believes that through CIKE she can help the city and her invested energy will return to her in a regular algorithm of cumulative motivation.

Vanda Lukačinová

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Project Manager for The Invisible Hotel
vanda@invisiblehotel.sk

During the night, she scrolls through veterinary books. During the days, she accompanies the hotel guests through the city. With her speed, she is almost invisible to the eye. Vanda writes you a letter, creates a programme for you, calls you a taxi, extinguishes fire, and yet, she is invisible.

Ivana Rusnáková

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Assistant for UNESCO Project
ivana.rusnakova@cike.sk

Ivanka works on several fronts in the cultural community. She worked on the White Night and now she stands behind the VUNU Gallery – all while being one of the most humble members of the CIKE team. She is fascinated by life alone and its accidents. She improvises not only in her dancing routines but also in difficult life situations, always knowing how to deal with a problem and how to give herself a chocolate reward at the end of the day.

Andrea Petrovčinová

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Chief editor of The Invisible Mag
andrea.petrovcinova@cike.sk

Her sense of grammar, language and poetics has secured the position for The Invisible Hotel x The Invisible Mag projects, for which she makes a plan while listening to Strauss’ waltz. Andrea is fascinated by the charm of a full-fledged conversation and she forever immortalises our city and its people.

 

Natália Centková

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Communications Specialist
natalia.centkova@cike.sk

From studying international and European Law, she has transferred to the world of marketing and online communication. She designs and takes care of the CIKE identity. She is a life-long fan of cinema, TV series and apart from her love for a good hike, she also enjoys everything sweet.

International connections