Monday, 28 January 2019

Croatian Culture Minister Meets with Serbian Counterpart

ZAGREB, January 28, 2019 - Croatian Culture Minister Nina Obuljen Koržinek on Monday met with her Serbian counterpart Vladan Vukosavljević, who was taking part in a commemorative event at the invitation of the Serb National Council, and the two ministers talked about cultural cooperation and restitution of Croatian cultural objects, the ministry said in a press release.

The two ministers concurred that the long-standing process of restitution of Croatian cultural assets is nearing a completion.

From 2001 to 2018, more than 29,885 moveable cultural objects were returned to museums, churches, monasteries and archives while the remaining artefacts yet to be returned mostly belong to the Krk and Šibenik Serb Orthodox monasteries, the ministry said.

The talks also focused on a Croatian-Serbian combined government committee for minorities which is scheduled to convene its eighth meeting in Zagreb in February.

The ministers commended the good cooperation within the framework of the Southeast European Advisory Board with emphasis on cooperation in strengthening a culture for sustainable development, the importance of museums in society, their role in protecting and promoting cultural wealth and of their role in promoting cultural and social diversity.

The next meeting of southeast European cultural ministers is schedule for April in the Bulgarian capital of Sofia.

The ministers assessed that good cooperation existed within the framework of China+16 initiative.

The two ministers commended bilateral cooperation involving the exchange of visiting theatre companies as well as developing cultural and literary cooperation between Croatian and Serbia.

The ministers also discussed the preparation of a cultural cooperation programme based on a bilateral agreement and possible exchange of certain modern art exhibitions, the ministry concluded.

More news on the cultural policy in Croatia can be found in the Politics section.

Wednesday, 16 January 2019

Art Cinema in Zagreb to Be Replaced by a Burger King?

“The Grič Club Cinema has ceased its operations after 75 years. Thank you for your loyalty and for your visits.” This is a message posted on the building at 6 Jurišićeva Street in Zagreb, where the Grič art cinema was operating until just last week. The news has saddened numerous fans of films, but also other citizens of Zagreb who mourn the loss of one of the last old cinemas in the city, reports Večernji List on January 16, 2019.

"We could not do anything, because the building in which the cinema is located was denationalized several years ago and returned to the descendants of the owners who have now sold it. The new owner does not want to have a cinema in this space,” says art cinema director Ina Čavlina. In order to continue with the film programme, they are looking for a new venue.

“The cinema requires a large venue that is difficult to find in the city centre. But we are determined to continue with the screenings,” says Čavlina, adding that the primary source of revenue, which enabled them to operate, were grants they received from the Europa Cinemas association.

The cinema could not have operated just with the ticket proceeds, as the entrance fee they charged was only 15 kuna. The building is in bad condition, says Čavlina, and requires a thorough restoration effort.

What will happen with the building constructed in 1940 is still unknown, but the art-cinema representatives say that there is unofficial information that the building will house a small hotel, as well as an outlet for the Burger King fast-food chain. Many citizens believe that would be a shame since it would completely destroy one of the symbols of the capital city. The building was designed by famous architects Drago Ibler and Stjepan Planić, and the cinema changed many names in its history, from Rex and Kleka to Kosmaj.

In 1990, it was renamed Grič, while in 2012 it was taken over by the Culture Club association, with Ina Čavlina as director. It initially screened independent films from the whole world, while in recent years it focused more on European films.

More film news from Croatia can be found in the Lifestyle section.

Translated from Večernji List (reported by Petra Balija).

Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Croatian Culture Minister Discusses Creative Europe Programme

ZAGREB, November 28, 2018 - European Union culture ministers on Tuesday discussed progress in the drafting of the Creative Europe programme for the 2021-27 period which includes support for culture, audiovisual sectors and media and for which the European Commission has proposed a 1.46 billion euro budget.

Creative Europe programme covers culture and media, putting greater emphasis on the spreading of media literacy and quality journalism.

Speaking to reporters, Croatian Culture Minister Nina Obuljen Koržinek said disinformation in media and media literacy raised questions in the member states of how to act through legislation, how to encourage quality media and quality journalism, and how to develop citizens' competencies for recognising inappropriate behaviour.

She said it was too early to say how much money would be allocated in the next multiannual framework.

Speaking of fake news and disinformation, she said solving this issue was "very important for creating and preserving trust in democratic institutions. "Many states are openly saying that fake news from outside the EU are being released on their territory. Baltic countries and Poland mentioned very clearly today the involvement of their eastern neighbour in the release of fake news."

She said Croatia's new electronic media law would oblige electronic publications to state their sources much more clearly.

She said Croatia and other EU member states were making efforts to create a regulatory framework for equitable compensation for artists, journalists and everyone creating content. She called claims that this would mean the death of free Internet as "typical disinformation," saying such regulations would primarily apply to big platforms such as Google and Facebook.

For more on the journalism in Croatia, click here.

Sunday, 11 November 2018

Old Steam Mill to Become Pet-Friendly Library with Gadget Garage

A museum of contemporary art in the early 1990s, a hotel at the end of the century, and a military museum a few years ago. Over the years, the proposals changed about what to do with the old steam mill (Paromlin) located in the Zagreb city centre. However, now it seems that the idea which first appeared in 2012, to turn the mill into a library, will become a reality, reports Večernji List on November 11, 2018.

The tender for the architectural design of the library has been published. Since the area covers nearly 20,000 square metres, the bidders will have until 31 January 2019 to submit their proposals. The best of them will receive almost 400,000 kuna from the city authorities, and the 300 million kuna reconstruction project will start.

Interested designers will have an opportunity to visit the currently dilapidated mill and see what needs and can be done. They will work following detailed guidelines about how the library, which will not open before 2025 and possibly much later, will eventually look like.

In front of the entrance, there will be a small square and it should provide access to the library which will be open 24 hours a day. “The main entrance will be open to users round the clock and equipped with a wireless internet network, benches and devices for people to return the borrowed library books,” say the guidelines.

At the entrance to the library, the citizen will be able to get all the information at information counters, as well as on large information screens, while those arriving on bikes will have a roofed parking lot. The library will have a special reading room for the daily and weekly press, computers so that the news can be read on the internet, as well as an informal meeting area connected to the cafeteria.

The new city library will be pet-friendly, at least in one part, since the entrance will provide a “pet-friendly area while the owners are in the library.” It will also include an exhibition area, conference halls and a restaurant. Toddlers will have a playing area, while preschoolers will have available 4,500 picture books, 11,000 books and a creative corner. Teenagers will be provided with desks with computers and media players for 10,147 DVDs, 1,444 CDs and 1,500 old VHS tapes, while adults will have a concentration area with individual seating.

The library will also feature something called the gadget garage. This will be an area with the latest technology available, such as mobile phones and IT equipment, where users will be able to test them. There will also be a room for listening to music, with “individual seating areas with headphones and players.”

For more news on Zagreb, visit our special section.

Translated from Večernji List (reported by Mateja Šobak).

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

“Ero the Joker” to Become First Croatian Live-Streamed Opera

The performance of the opera “Ero the Joker” (Eros S Onoga Svijeta) by Jakov Gotovac, directed by Krešimir Dolenčić, which will be presented by the Croatian National Theatre (HNK) in Zagreb on Tuesday, November 6, will be live-streamed around the world and thus become the first Croatian opera made digitally available in real-time to audiences in Europe and the world, announced the HNK on October 31, 2018.

The live stream of the work considered the highlight of the Croatian repertoire is part of the Opera Vision project of live streaming of performances, which makes the Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb join prestigious global institutions such as the Royal Opera House and national operas from the Netherlands, Latvia, Hungary and Sweden.

The project was launched by Opera Europa, the European association of operas and festivals. The platform places particular emphasis on attracting and educating younger audiences who watch performances through mobile applications. The project cooperates with 30 partners from 18 countries: Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Great Britain.

As pointed out by the HNK, since the year 2018 has been proclaimed as the European Year of Cultural Heritage, the national theatre has chosen to present to Europe and the world the legendary opera written in 1935. Viewers from around the world will be able to see the performance directed by Krešimir Dolenčić which has been featured at the stage of the National Theatre for 26 years. The performance will feature soloists Siniša Štork, Dubravka Šeparović, Valentina Fijačko Kobić, Stjepan Franetović, Ljubomir Puškarić, Ana Zebić Kostel, Neven Mrzlečki, and the HNK choir and orchestra. It will be conducted by Josip Šego.

The Opera Vision project also includes a series of activities, so in addition to the live stream of the performance itself, the official YouTube channel will feature short documentaries about the work and the city of Zagreb.

“Although a part of our present audience is composed of pupils and students who attend performances as part of their education, we believe that making recordings of performances available on online services will further encourage young people to develop their interest in opera and to more often come to the Croatian National Theatre,” announced the HNK in a statement.

For more news about culture in Croatia, click here.

Friday, 21 September 2018

Croatia and China Discuss Culture Cooperation

ZAGREB, September 21, 2018 - Croatia's Minister of Culture Nina Obuljen Koržinek and her Chinese counterpart Luo Shugang met on Thursday in Dubrovnik on the margins of a "China + 16" ministerial conference for the talks on the continuation of successful bilateral cooperation in the area of culture between the two countries.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Croatia Signs EU Copyright Declaration

ZAGREB, September 12, 2018 - Croatia's Minister of Culture Nina Obuljen Koržinek on Wednesday signed a declaration by the EU ministers of culture regarding the proposed Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market, the ministry said in a press release.

Thursday, 23 August 2018

UNESCO Called to Prevent a Ban on Traditional Singing Festival

ZAGREB, August 23, 2018 - The Serb cultural society "Prosvjeta" and the Serb National Council (SNV) said on Wednesday that they had notified UNESCO's World Heritage Committee of attempts to ban a festival of traditional “ojkanje” singing and threats sent to participants in the event promoting that traditional form of folk singing, inscribed on UNESCO's List of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Monday, 9 July 2018

Argentinean Tenor Cura Stages Photo Exhibition, to Give Concert in Zagreb

ZAGREB, July 9, 2018 - World-famous Argentinean tenor Jose Cura will hold a concert in Zagreb's Tomislavov Square on Tuesday as part of the open-air Zagreb Classic festival and is also exhibiting his photographs in the city's Art Pavilion.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

New Museum to Focus on War Photography

The museum raised 50,000 kuna in a crowdfunding campaign.

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