A “free state” for culture & Kölsch beerA rusty steel dinosaur looms high above Odonien as though it wants to protect it from intruders. But it’s actually pointing the way toward a particularly authentic experience. That’s because Odonien is synonymous with many things: art in an open-air studio, a legendary festival, experimental music, theatre, comedy, open-air cinema, a sculpture park, a flea market and a party venue. Yes, all of that. Step right in!
Around the corner from a bordello and open for (almost) everythingAt first glance, Odonien is a scrapyard, but if you look more closely it’s an escapist venue. Here in the shadow of Europe’s biggest “eros centre”, visitors can dive into a bizarre industrial landscape filled with sculptures made of scrap metal, found objects and industrial odds and ends, as well as metallicised mannequins, warehouse spaces, small industrial halls and decommissioned buses.
The atmosphere alone is worth a visit. Unique and typically “Kölsch”, this is a meeting point for lifestyles and people of every kind. And that’s what makes the whole experience so relaxed — and so exciting at the same time. Incidentally, have you ever gone to the loo in a tiger cage? Micro-adventures like this one await you in Odonien — and promise to fill your mind with unforgettable images.
Experimental, legendary, bizarreIf you ask Odoniens and visitors what makes this place so special, they’ll talk about its quirky aesthetics and its diverse range of events and happenings. According to Odo Rumpf, “Everything that fits into the concept and the environment is welcome here.” The spirit of this place is correspondingly experimental, artistic and extravagant. For example, the creative robot-art-music festival known as Robodonien is legendary and well known beyond Cologne’s city limits.
A smaller Kölsch version of Burning Man: RobodonienWhen it’s time for Robodonien, elaborately designed automata, androids and mechanical creatures come to life on the Odonien grounds — and they accompany you as you enter a world full of creative electronics, cybernetics, pyrotechnics, performances and multimedia shows, street theatre and experimental music performed by artists from all over the world.
Our tip: The fire-breathing dragons, robot horses, monstrous steel creatures and flamethrowers are of course especially impressive at night. It’s definitely a memorable experience, whether you’re a local or a visitor to Cologne.
Odonien: a beer garden between art and KölschIf there’s no event in sight, stop by at Odonien’s beer garden. Especially on balmy summer nights, you’ll enjoy the pleasantly informal atmosphere. Order a delicious beverage or a snack — and make yourself at home between the plants and the sculptures.
If you’re looking for a wide range of interesting visual art, you’ve come to the right place. This is where Odonien’s founder Odo Rumpf exhibits his works. And if you come here more often, you can also trace the artistic process itself.
The backstory of OdonienGood things are often the result of an unusual history. In the case of Odonien, it all began with Odo Rumpf, a mechanical engineer and a metal sculptor by trade. Odo was offered a stretch of disused railway land along the Hornstraße to use for his work — and he’s still using it today as his open-air studio. Over time, and thanks to many ideas occurring to creative individuals, Odonien has developed into an event venue for every taste and every generation. After all, it’s clear that the special places in this world of ours are not designed on a drawing board.
If you’d like to find out more about Odonien and the art of Odo Rumpf, you can join one of the regular tours…
Suitable for any weather
for individual guests
S-Bahn station Nippes, walking distance 5 minutes
Tram no. 5, exit Liebigstraße, walking distance 10 minutes
Tram no. 17 and 15, exit Lohsestraße, walking distance 10 minutes
Tram no. 18, 12 and 15, exit Hansaring, walking distance 10 minutes