The Museum of Contemporary Art (MSU), the biggest and most contemporary museum institution in Croatia and the largest cultural institution since the independence of Croatia has recently been opened in New Zagreb.
The new grandiose building of architect Igor Franić, the first larger cultural institution on the other side of the River Sava will enable the appropriate conservation and exhibition of the collected art, and the conditions necessary for various programs, educational work-shops, film-projections and theatre performances aimed at the wider public and will make this part of the city the new cultural centre of Zagreb as well as a place of family outings, entertainment and new knowledge.
The overall size of the museum is 14,500 square meters, 3,500 of which is intended for the permanent exhibition, 1,500 for temporary exhibitions and 700 for exhibitions on the roof. The museum features a multimedia hall, library, pedagogical hall, museum store with book-store, cafe, restaurant, suites for visiting artists and curators and a 725 square meter lobby.
After more than 50 years of careful collection, treatment and presentation of only a part of the collection, the fist exhibition with which the museum introduced itself to the public was its permanent exhibition “collection in movement”. The other great exhibition is “Acquisitions 2004-2009, and the visitors were also welcomed by the exhibition “Museum before the Museum”, a photography collection by Jasenko Rasol who followed the construction of the museum with his camera.
The art of Croatian and foreign artists that are part of the collection are testimony to the different styles and movements, such as abstract expressionism, geometrical and lyrical abstraction, minimalism, proto-conceptualism, analytical and primary painting, Fluxus, conceptual art, optical art, transavangard… reflecting the role of the Museum in following the newest artistic movements.
MSU contains several collections – paintings, sculptures, drawings, graphics, posters, photography, film and video and the media art collection. The museum is also in charge of the Richter collection, numbering 182 works of art, the Josip Seissl collection, numbering 1,258, the Benko Horvat collection with 611, the Toše Dabac archive numbering 200,000 items and the Ivan Kožarić collection with 6,000 items.
Several installations enrich the museum, “the slide” by world-renowned artist Carsten Höller, “Eyes of purification” by Polish artist Miroslaw Balke, on the roof terrace the “Artist at work” by Dalibor Martinis is installed, and in from of the museum “Frames” by Ivana Franke, Lee Pelivan and Tomo Plejić. On the roof, the installation “War field” is located, by Ivan Božičević, and in the museum store the “Alchemy polyptich” by Silvije Vujičić.
The 2010 museum program also features the following exhibitions: A pair of nice shoes – Reality Check in Eastern Europe, independent exhibition of Danica Dakić, independent exhibition of Aleksandar Srnec, project Gilbert & George, works from the FRAC collections, exhibition of Zlatko Kopljara, and the Murtić donation.
The Zagreb MSU was founded in December of 1954 and has instantaneously become the reference pint on the cultural map of the city, and soon of Europe. The desire to extend the museum existed in the 1960s, primarily because of the significance of the collections that were kept in unsuitable conditions and were not available to the public. At the international tender in 1999, the project of architect Igor Franić won. Construction began in 2003, and was jointly funded by the City of Zagreb and the Ministry of Culture.
City of Zagreb Tourist Association
Museum of Contemporary Art