The festival takes place in the dystopian area of an old football stadium near Lužánky park in Brno. It is close enough to the city centre to be easily accessed on foot and by public transport. The monumental remains of the stadium hark back to the 1990s, but also serve as a monument to older glories. Until recently it was a wildly over-grown husk of infrastructure, looking like a Cormac McCarthy post-apocalyptic vision.
What is left of the white facade of the Bobycentrum speaks to Brno’s ill-fated attempts to create a slice of Americana in the early 1990s. Together, the two buildings create a genius locus that fits Pop Messe perfectly. Contemporary culture will resonate in walls of a faded past that somehow still lives in the present.
The football stadium used to be one of Brno’s trademark monuments. Built in 1953, with a capacity of 60 000, Brno’s football club Zbrojovka won the Czech First League in this stadium. In 1993, after the Bobycentrum was open, Metallica, Alice in Chains and The Cult played here.
Both the stadium and Bobycentrum began to decay. Not even Velvet Revolution euphoria could keep them running. In 2001, the stadium ceased to be fit for purpose in the Czech First League and has been abandoned since. For years it’s been under attack from all sorts of wild plants, left for nature to play its own games in. Lately however, the stadium has been coming back to life. The grass was surrounded by a running track and sports and culture events began to take place here again.