[spectre] CFP: Le Corbusier in Yugoslavia and the Balkans (Sarajevo, 22-23 Sep 23)

Andreas Broeckmann andreas.broeckmann at leuphana.de
Sun May 7 17:39:51 CEST 2023

From: Docomomo Bosnia and Herzegovina / MAO Ljubljana / IPU Zagreb / 
Docomomo Serbia
Date: May 6, 2023
Subject: CFP: Le Corbusier in Yugoslavia and the Balkans (Sarajevo, 
22-23 Sep 23)

Sarajevo, Historical Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Sep 22–23, 2023
Deadline: Jun 15, 2023

Le Corbusier, the central figure of the Modern Movement in architecture, 
traveled across the Balkans and researched its houses, cities and 
landscapes. In turn, many architects from the Balkan states, including 
key authors from former Socialist Yugoslavia, worked in Le Corbusier’s 
atelier in Paris. After this formative working experience, they returned 
to Yugoslavia or other countries of origin, and transformed their built 
environments through projects, strongly inspired by what they learned in 
the course of their collaborations with Le Corbusier.

In 1953, the exhibition of Corbusier’s work that traveled across 
Yugoslavia elaborated on the singular testimonies of his collaborators 
and “rounded off” the picture about his personality and his work in 
Yugoslav architecture and popular culture.

However, his legacy in the Balkans, in the form of permanent influence 
on architectural thought, culture and practice, has never been studied 
as an integral historical manifestation of knowledge transfer. The 
thematic conference, titled “Le Corbusier in Yugoslavia and the Balkans 
- reception and interpretation of modernist architectural postulates in 
the peripheral region” is performing the first step towards the 
evaluation of Le Corbusier’s role in the modernization of Yugoslav and 
Balkan built environment, the results of which we still live today.
Juraj Neidhardt, Ernest Weissmann, Edvard Ravnikar and Milorad Pantović 
are just some of those Yugoslav architect’s whose life’s work was 
profoundly marked by their professional encounter with Le Corbusier.

Experimentation with Le Corbusier’s basic architectural and urbanistic 
types in Yugoslavia and the Balkans was limited by social and material 
circumstances, while at the same time they served as basic tools of 
social modernization and urbanization. Harnessed in post-war 
reconstruction and mass construction, architects saw Le Corbusier as 
both a role model and saviour. The 1953 traveling exhibition of his 
architectural, urbanistic and artistic work, which has been put on 
display in Belgrade, Ljubljana, Sarajevo, Skopje and Zagreb, as well as 
Split and Mostar, was supposed to reinstate architecture as the 
principal visual art. Indirectly, the exhibition had an important 
homogenizing effect on national production, which in each of the former 
Yugoslav republics had its own specific, although similar, course.
The 70th anniversary of this exhibition (organized by the Union of 
Architects of Yugoslavia), as well as a 100th anniversary of Le 
Corbusier’s capital work „Vers une Architecture“ (published in 1923), 
create an exceptional occasion for a complex insight into the knowledge 
transfer between Le Corbusier and Yugoslav and Balkan architecture.
With this goal, the thematic conference “Le Corbusier in Yugoslavia and 
the Balkans,” organized by Docomomo Bosnia and Herzegovina and 
Association of Architects in B&H, with the support of Museum of 
Architecture and Design - MAO (Ljubljana), Institute for Art History 
(Zagreb) and Docomomo Serbia and Association of Architects of Belgrade 
(Belgrade), invites architecture and art historians to investigate the 
transfers, mediations, results and consequences of Le Corbusier’s 
teaching and practice in Yugoslavia and the Balkans.

Proposals submitted to the conference may choose to address the 
following questions:

Which particular concepts and/or techniques of Le Corbusier’s doctrine 
of modern architecture and urbanism had the most agency and impact on 
architecture theory, practice and culture in Yugoslavia and the Balkans?

What were the channels, genres and media active in the dissemination of 
Le Corbusier’s thoughts (journals, translated books, television, popular 
press) and what was the impact of these media on the contents of the 
knowledge transfer?

What was the popular and institutional reception of these ideas, 
including politics and policies of spatial development, heritage 
protection and their relationship to the environment?

Which particular projects by local authors in Yugoslavia and the Balkans 
concretized Le Corbusier’s principles and provided for their further 
dissemination and popularization?

What were local variations and answers to the provocation of Le 
Corbusier’s discourse, as possible elements of the reversed knowledge 

Submit proposals (300 words), and bio (200 words) to the email 
docomomo.bh at aabh.ba.

Deadline: 15th of June 2023.

The scientific committee of the conference will go through, select and 
organize proposals around themed sessions.

Notifications on participation will be sent by June 30, 2023.

The participation in the conference is free, with no registration fees.
Selected papers will be invited to prepare a submission for an edited, 
peer-reviewed volume.

Scientific Committee

Bogo Zupančič, The Museum of Architecture and Design (MAO) Ljubljana
Tamara Bjažić-Klarin, Institute of Art History (IPU) Zagreb
Mejrema Zatrić, International University of Sarajevo
Jelica Jovanović, Docomomo Serbia
Arnaud Dercelles, Fondation Le Corbusier
Vladimir Kulić, Iowa State University
Veronique Boone, Université Libre de Bruxelles
Martina Malešič, Univerza v Ljubljani
Nevena Novaković, University of Banja Luka

Organizing Committee
Aida Abadžić-Hodžić, University of Sarajevo
Aida Idrizbegović-Zgonić, University of Sarajevo
Lejla Odobašić Novo, International Burch University
Sabina Tanović, Delft University of Technology
Mirna Pedalo, Royal College of Art
Igor Kuvač, University of Banja Luka
Isidora Karan, University of Banja Luka
Dijana Alić, University of New South Wales

Reference / Quellennachweis:
CFP: Le Corbusier in Yugoslavia and the Balkans (Sarajevo, 22-23 Sep 
23). In: ArtHist.net, May 6, 2023. <https://arthist.net/archive/39221>.

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