Have you ever experienced art being delivered from a vending machine?   Neither have we!  And so it is no surprise that the Galerie 360 art initiative tweaked our interest!  Keep reading to find out all about this cool whacky idea in Oberursel!

The Story behind Galerie 360

When Anna Philipp sat down to create some Easter decorations two years ago, she never imagined that she would end up as the driving force behind a local artistic community coming together to share their passions. 

Never someone previously drawn to producing art herself, Anna moved to Frankfurt for work in 2010 and a few years later found herself in Oberursel with a young family and a desire to get to know new people. Having lived in a number of countries herself over the years, both for study and for work, she says that she knows very well the feeling that belonging to a community can help people to connect to a new area, and even to help to discover new talents. 

Art from a Vending Machine

For Anna, this desire to connect also unexpectedly launched a new business and a dedicated creative space for others to meet and share their ideas and learn from each other. 

“I had made some Easter decorations for friends and realised that they might be something that people would like to buy. But I had no idea how to begin to sell them. One day I had the idea that a vending machine might be a good way to sell what I’d made. Then I realised there were too many empty spaces I could never fill”.

And with that, Galerie 360 was born.

What can you expect delivered out of Galerie 360?

Anna reached out to a number of local Taunus artists over social media and was surprised by the response. Many artists were in a similar position, in part due to the effects of the Covid lockdowns – and Galerie 360 was soon filled with ceramics, hand-drawn postcards, jewellery, and Anna’s own personalised key rings. 

The vending machine has become such a popular way for artists to display and sell their wares that there is a waiting list to join and Galerie 360 was able to hold an official launch party this past summer. It attracted both local media and the attention of Oberursel mayor, Antje Runge, who praised both ingenuity of the idea and the commitment to community. 

Anna is also conscious of retaining this sense of togetherness, as she builds her brand and looks to future projects. “Together we can achieve so much more as a collective with the same interests. That’s something that motivates me”, she says. “For some it is a hobby, for some it’s a job. Connecting artists and sharing experiences is so important to me”.

So what’s next?

Following on from the success of the vending machine, Anna has started on a number of new and ambitious projects. Fueled by the need for “a space for creative people to share their passions”, Anna will later this year launch a brand new initiative at Krebsmühle, an historic building between Frankfurt and Oberursel. The space will be open for art and creative endeavours of all kinds.  Everything from painting tutorials and music clubs, to knitting and pottery classes. 

Anna says the city of Oberursel and its artists were fundamental in helping her to fine-tune the project and find the perfect property.  And that her dream of finding a space which is “comfortable and welcoming” has truly found a home at Krebsmühle. Groups and individuals with a passion for their craft will be able to rent the space from the end of this onwards, and Anna says she is looking forward to being part of an “open creative space, where everyone’s welcome to connect with others and exchange ideas”. 

Seasonal Pop-Up Store in Oberursel

Also happening in the centre of Oberursel, local artists from the collective are exhibiting and selling their work in a seasonal Pop-Up store. Anna hopes that the store will serve as an introduction to the idea that everyone can participate in creative projects, both professionals and amateurs. “Art is not just about producing items; it’s about exchanging ideas”, she says. “I’ve learnt a lot from this process – exchanging both highs and lows and also becoming an active contributor to the local community”. 

The Krebsmühle project will be open to anyone with a passion for creativity.  And Anna encourages members of the expat community in particular to get involved. There will be classes and meetings in English and other languages.  And she hopes to help others find a space they feel welcome and as much a part of the community as she has come to feel.