The Works of Jože Plečnik in Ljubljana – Human Centred Urban Design
Curators: Špela Spanžel, Tomaž Štoka, dr. Bogo Zupančič
Jože Plečnik’s works in Ljubljana were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List on 31 July 2021. At its 44th session, the World Heritage Committee followed the recommendation of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and unanimously adopted the decision to incscribe Plečnik’s Ljubljana on the list of properties that are part of heritage of humankind. The Committee recognized Plečnik’s Ljubljana as an outstanding example of human-centred urban design in accordance with the profoundly humanistic vision of an architect who transformed a provincial town of the former Empire into a symbolic national capital.
It accepted the rationale for the selected public spaces (city squares, parks, streets, promenades, embankments and bridges across the Ljubljanica river) and public institutions (the national library, markets, funerary complex and churches), which have been subtly integrated into the existing urban, cultural, and natural contexts to create a new identity for the city and meet the needs of its residents. The inscription recognised the systematic efforts of competent institutions, owners, and communities to protect Plečnik’s heritage, while the Committee’s recommendations regarding the heritage impact assessment of contemporary interventions into the heritage site will serve to inform the protection and management of the World Heritage property.
The exhibition presents the process and serves as the final result of the nomination that brought together heritage and museum institutions, national and municipal institutes, experts, owners, and the local community alike. The extensive and complex work performed by the interdisciplinary working group was based on previous research and presentations of Plečnik’s creative work. Placed in the context of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention the architect’s work brings added value to the contemporary understanding of universally recognized concepts. With the inscription the national responsibility for the protection of Plečnik’s heritage grew into a commitment to the international community, while the project evolved into a lasting obligation to protect our common heritage with the respect it deserves.
Texts: Špela Spanžel in Tomaž Štoka
Design: Matej Koren Studio