Balkanology comes to Belgrade


Balkanology. New Architecture and urban phenomena in South Eastern Europe

Exhibition, 6 – 19 May 2011, Belgrade Heritage House
Opening: 5 May 2011, 8:30 pm
7 May 2011, 12 noon: Guided tour with curator Kai Vöckler

An exhibition organised in the framework of the 6th Belgrade International Architecture Week (BINA) 2011.

Opening speeches by:
Nicolaus Keller, director of the Austrian Cultural Forum Belgrade
Jovana Trifunovic, representative of ERSTE Foundation
Ana Veljkovic, Director of the Belgrade Heritage House
Vladimir Kulic, co-curator

Belgrade Heritage House, Kuca legata, Knez Mihajlova 46, Belgrade

The exhibition Balkanology. New Architecture and Urban Phenomena in South Eastern Europe puts the rapid process of urban transformation and the architecture in the former-socialist republics of South Eastern Europe into focus. Selected examples in a range of locations concentrate on the new and unique development of architecture and urban development in these countries – as a deliberate alternative to attempting to provide a valid representation of the urban development for the entire region.

Supported by ERSTE Foundation from the outset, the exhibition opens up a new field, shedding light on the less well-known architecture of the post-socialist era as well as the result of unregulated and uncontrolled urban growth in the countries of South Eastern Europe. The focus of the exhibition is on the most recent socio-political changes and the impact that these have had on architecture and urban development in the region.

Extensive informal construction that began with the end of the socialist economic system has resulted in a radical transformation of urban structures and a new form of urbanisation. With examples from Belgrade, Bucharest, Kotor, Pula, Prishtina, Sofia, Tirana and Zagreb, the exhibition’Balkanology. New Architecture and Urban Phenomena in South Eastern Europe’ shows how architects, urbanists and activists engage with the rapid processes of urban transformation in a context of their cultural, social and political dimensions in the Balkan countries. Research projects, concrete interventions, architectural analyses and planning strategies are introduced – along with little known exceptional Yugoslavian modern socialist buildings in a dialogue with contemporary architecture.

Using selected examples, Maroje Mrduljaš, the editor of the Croatian architectural magazine Oris, and the Serbian architectural historian Vladimir Kulić will show how Yugoslavian architects and planners have tackled “modernity” and “internationality”. Alongside chosen topics, the co-curators will set up an interrelation between historical and contemporary buildings and projects, and comment on them with reference to the phenomenon of “interrupted modernism” in Yugoslavia.

An exhibition by the S AM — Swiss Architecture Museum, Basel, in cooperation with the Az W. With support of ERSTE Foundation.

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