THE KLOVIĆEVI DVORI GALLERY

The Klovićevi dvori Gallery is the largest gallery institution in Croatia.  It has a broad spectrum of work and organises art and culturological exhibitions ranging from prehistory to the present. The variety of its programmes always intrigues anew the home and foreign public, presenting fresh and different approaches to developments in historical and contemporary art. From its foundation in 1982, the Klovićevi dvori Gallery, then called the Museum Space (Muzejski prostor), was the first to take major steps in the Croatian art and cultural scene.

In its four stories of exhibition space it mounts up to 30 exhibitions a year visited by several hundred thousand visitors. The high level of the exhibition programmes are maintained by introducing innovative approaches, selecting complex subjects and styles of presentation, and applying new technologies. Through its exhibitions the Klovićevi dvori Gallery promotes the historical cultural heritage and contemporary art, and some of the most important projects realised in recent years were the exhibitions French Renaissance; Dora Maar and Picasso – Touching Views; Van Gogh, Mondrian and The Hague School of Painting; Marc Chagall – A Story of Stories; The Quiet Rebellion – The Greatest Masters of German Expressionism; Great Portraits by Felix Nadar; Bodies Revealed; Pompeii – Life in the Shadow of Vesuvius; Titian, Tintoretto, Veronese – Great Masters of the Renaissance; Edgar Degas, Sculptures; Julije Klović – The Greatest Miniaturist of the Renaissance; Masterpieces from the Musée Picasso, Paris; Normandy – The Birth of Impressionism…

The Klovićevi dvori Gallery is situated in the complex of a former Jesuit Monastery whose construction began in the 17th century. In the 1980s the monastery building was reconstructed and since 1982 it has been an exhibition venue. Right from the early eighties the Gallery boldly began to present major culturological projects, formerly unimaginable in Croatia. It was opened with works by Dürer, Dušan Džamonje and Oton Gliha, soon after it enabled the first public viewing of the Treasury of Zagreb Cathedral, then it mounted a retrospective of the sculptor Ivan Meštrović and not long after it thrilled the European public with Ancient Chinese Culture. Visitors began to come in hundreds of thousands. The gallery opened its doors to and was the first in Croatia to promote strip cartoons, gag cartoons and illustration, and it founded the Croatian Biennale of Illustration. It brought to Zagreb works by Picasso, Van Gogh, Mondrian, Miró, Vasareli, Chagall, Degas, Monet, Kandinsky and many artists belonging to the celebrated German Expressionism and Russian Avant-garde. On several occasions the Gallery successfully presented the Croatian historical heritage and contemporary art to Europe and the world. To the home public it uncovered a previously unknown art heritage: many church treasuries, peak artworks kept by monastic orders, the Dalmatian Hinterland as an unknown land, and Slavonia, Baranja and Srijem as a source of European civilisation.  It was the first to evaluate the bodies of work of home artists of modernism: Emanuel Vidović, Leo Junek, Slava Raškaj, Jozo Kljaković, Robert Auer, Vlaho Bukovac, Mate Celestin Medović and Menci Clement Crnčić. It also offered the first culturological synthesis of the Croatian avant-garde, the first synthesized presentation of the Greek and Classical Roman heritage on Croatian territory, and a culturological synthesis of Croatian Expressionism. Its further development and programme strategy will, of course, continue the organisation of international exhibition projects and their contextualisation in the currents of fine arts at home, and it will also focus on the affirmation and promotion of the best art production in Croatia and its recognition in Europe and the word. The professional nature of our activities and our serious approach to the art heritage has many times been awarded and recognised by state institutions, the media and in the first place by our faithful public.