Dubrovnik Gallery of Contemporary Art and Sculpture
Nominated for the H.I. Feldman Prize, Fall 2015
Dubrovnik Harbor, Croatia
Critic: Demetri Porphyrios, George Knight
It is a joy to wander through the Adriatic cities. The streets contract, the plazas expand – these places tighten and release, revealing unexpected clusters of activity at the turn of every corner. Public spaces are small, large, narrow, short, indoor, and outdoor. There is no shortage of urban variety or places to be. The city breathes.
These cities have grown upon themselves, re-using old buildings for new purposes, building upon its past to create a layering of material, buildings, and functions over time. There is respect for what is existing and its history can be seen on its walls. One can see each and every stone ever laid to create the city as they are today.
The Dubrovnik Gallery of Contemporary Art and Sculpture is not a single building, but a neighborhood of buildings. The Gallery is built upon the existing structure of Dubrovnik’s former arsenal – a building once used to build, repair, and store the city’s four warships. The gallery must respect what is existing – and when, and only when does the gallery understand the language, character, and tectonic of its site, will the city give back to the gallery her diverse inventory of potential exhibition spaces. It will be a quiet set of buildings. It will not beg for attention, but be modest, yet powerful. Above all, the gallery neighborhood must be a worthy contribution to the city - a good neighbor today and in the future.