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Cultural heritage of Banovina, Pokuplje and Moslavina

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As part of the national cultural heritage digitization project, it is planned to make available to the general public as soon as possible the entire fund of the Cultural Heritage Photo Library of the Ministry of Culture and Media, which has an unquestionable professional and sometimes broader cultural-historical value. The initial publication of the photo collection, entitled “Cultural heritage of Banovina, Pokuplje and Moslavina through the eyes of a conservator”, aims to be a professional, human and heart-felt contribution to the climate which, after the sufferings and sufferings of the war not so long ago, was hit by a lightning and devastating earthquake at the end of 2020, once again desecrating and changing this in many respects unique and exceptional area between the Sava, the lower reaches of the Kupa, Una, Glina and the so-called “dry border” towards the Bosnian Krajina.
Thanks to conservation photography, which acts as a visual guardian of the state of heritage, we are privileged to witness monumental values, changed and/or lost with the passage of time, which is precisely the case with the heritage in the area of ​​Banovina.
The conservatory photographic fund of Banovina includes about 4,700 photographs, the oldest of which date from the middle of the 19th century and primarily tell about the spatial coverage of individual cities at that time and their economic and cultural reach under the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, while the youngest, post-war ones, fall into the the end of the 20th century, when, in the historical context, the peaceful era of the young Croatian state begins, and in terms of photography and technology, analog photography is replaced by digital.
A special and impressive collection within the subject fund consists of photographs of old Croatian medieval noble towns and later military-Krajija fortifications, today in most cases in ruins, taken in the period from the end of the 19th century to 1963 (Sisak’s Old Town; Gvozdansko, Pedalj and Zrin in the municipality of Dvor na Uni; Čuntić and Klinac in the municipality of Petrinja; Perna in the municipality of Topusko; Jelengrad and Košutgrad in the municipality of Velika Ludina).
Another impressive group consists of photographs of traditional wooden construction, recorded in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s for systematic ethnological records of the area (the settlements of Krapje (Jasenovac Municipality), Greda Sunjska (Sunja Municipality) and Gušće (Sisak Municipality) stand out due to their extensive processing).
In accordance with the considerable spatial coverage of the Sisak-Moslavina County (the third largest in Croatia) and the long time span of conservation arrangements and photography (even copying of older structures), the authors of the heritage photographs of Banovina and Moslavina are numerous and are made up of professional photographers as well as cultural workers of wider occupations and professions (historians, art historians, architects, builders, archaeologists, ethnologists).
Speaking about the photographers represented in the conservation photographic oeuvre from the areas of Banovina, Pokuplje and Moslavina, it is certainly worth mentioning the Zagreb lithographer and photographer Julius Hühn, an immigrant from Saxony, to whom we owe not only one of the earliest photographs of Zagreb, but also of the economic prosperity of Sisak at the time (the new station complex). or the spatial scope of the city of Petrinja from the early sixties of the 19th century (city panorama).
Somewhere around the same time, Croatian grand cities and/or defensive fortifications caught the eye of the then-established photographer Ivan Standl (Sisak), and at the turn of the 19th to the 20th century, the archivist, conservator and general promoter of social and cultural life Emil Laszowski (Sisak and the towns of the Zrinski family – Gvozdansko, Zrin and Pedalj).
Also, Gjuro Szabo, the secretary and head of the modern national conservation service for decades, and then Nino Vranić, its photographer for decades, entrusted generations of conservators with a respectable photographic fund from the country, including these areas.
Let’s add to this the fact that in 1963, and then in 1972 (then with a team of young ethnologists), extensive and systematic recordings of the exceptional ethnographic heritage of this region were entrusted to Nina Vranić, which was continued in 1981 by the museum photographer and ethnologist Mladen Tomljenović and the photographer of the Zagreb regional conservation services and painter, Igor Nikolić.
Let’s conclude – the conservation photographic fund of Banovina and Moslavina refers to a geographically wide area of ​​Sisak-Moslavina County with numerous missing and surviving old towns and settlements and even more numerous urban or rural buildings of profane and sacred architecture.
In this landscape with misty water courses and oak groves, with paliers, cousins, carpenters and ciphers, with sailing and anchored ships, with decorated ornaments, cheese trees and stork nests, we cannot help but feel what Slavko Striegl recorded while breathing with this climate. , Matko Peić, Ivan Antolčić, Branko Čačić and Davor Salopek – features of our roots and Proto-Slavic Transcarpathian beginnings.

Prepared by: Sanja Grković

May 2021