el puente_lab

[laboratory of cultural activation]

el puente_lab is a platform for artistic and cultural production, active in Medellín - Colombia, which aims to develop cultural projects on a local level, building bridges of communication with artists and experts through a strategy of international cooperation.
The projects developed by el puente_lab meet the specific needs of the social context where they are carried out, using artistic creativity as a tool of activation of cultural projects that initiate, facilitate and / or accompany processes of education, communication and urban and social transformation.

el puente_lab: Juan Esteban Sandoval, Daniel Alejandro Urrea Peña, Alejandro Vásquez Salinas.


  • Cooperation with international artists and experts: the methodology of el puente_lab is based on building bridges of communication between distant people / places and on the exchange of ideas as a basement for the creative process. The cultural activation processes that el puente_lab develop are based on a direct participation of people with international experience in the specific area where the project is carried out. For each project el puente_lab selects, through its network of contacts, artists or qualified experts to develop the required activity; selection can be made directly or through open calls..
  • Development of specific proposals for each context: the projects that el puente_lab develops born from site-specific needs or from specific requests of the local partner. The first step of each project is a process of dialogue and exchange with the institution that commissioned the project and the creation of a conceptual framework from a perusal of the territory, from on-site research and documentation and from dialogue with local subjects and experts.
  • Networking: el puente_lab works with international institutions which support the communication and promotion of the projects, and has also obtained financial support from international organizations over the past three years.
    Locally el puente_lab works with cultural institutions, non-governmental organizations, departments of the municipal government, universities and other no-profit entities.
  • Development of projects of medium / long-term: from the experience gained in the last three years, el puente_lab has chosen a methodology that provides the presence of the artist or of an invited expert for a period long enough to know the territory, develop a proposal and adjust it to the needs arising during project development. The implementation process will last from six months at least to a maximum of two years, with periods of actual presence of the artist which may vary from one week to two months, as required by the artist or by the cooperating institution.
  • Human resources and infrastructure: el puente_lab team is formed by three people, each one with a defined role (coordination, communication, production). The team receives compensation for the specific activities associated with the developed project.
    el puente_lab has chosen not to have a fixed physical location, so it does not incur in expenses for rent, utilities or maintenance; each project, depending by its specific needs, establishes partnerships with local institutions for support and infrastructures. Besides this "core team", el puente_lab has formed a network of partners worldwide, with representatives in Rome, Milan, Madrid, Barcelona, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Quito, London and Paris among others.