The Architecture Exhibition 'In - Between' in Venice

National Commissioner for the project: Andrija Rusan
Curator: Vedran Mimica
Authors: Sasa Randic and Idis Turato

About the project:


a project on the Croatian coast, global processes, and how to live with them Croatian Presentation at the 10th International Architecture Exhibition: Cities, Architecture and Society, Venice 2006.

For the past four decades the Mediterranean coast has been under intense pressure that has transformed the coastline into a continuous built environment, with only few areas that still maintain a different character. One of these pockets is the Croatian coast, now itself undergoing a dynamic transformation.

Picturesque images of Croatian coast displayed in magazines and in sponsored video clips of the Croatian Tourist Board display an image of frozen beauty, “a small country for great holidays”, “the Mediterranean as it once was”. This image projects a romantic perception, shared both inside and outside Croatia, of the last reserve of long-forgotten calm and old-style authenticity in this fast-moving and changing world.

However, this perception could not be more wrong. Historically, Croatia was never a stable environment. The country has traditionally lain at the edge of major political systems in European history, and the development of the territory has always been infl uenced by this geopolitical position, tectonic movements on a wider scale having had direct and dramatic consequences on the face of the land.

When even its history is a dynamic category, the lasting condition of a territory is traditionally a state of latent instability. Political transformations have greatly infl uenced territorial mutation.

In the last hundred years alone, the Croatian coast has belonged to different states and political systems. In this uncommon situation people might have had passports issued by fi ve different governments without ever having left their home place.

This dynamic political and social context has created the specifi c condition of in-betweenness, encouraging a detached and somewhat ironic attitude to the system.

In terms of territorial behaviour, this condition has favoured the emergence of independent and active individual practices, creating specifi c refl ections of global processes in the Croatian environment.

The Croatian Biennale project In-between focuses on increased urban pressure on the Croatian coast and gives an account on how coastal cities are being transformed in social, economic and cultural terms. It explores specifi c urban conditions in three harbour–cities: Dubrovnik, Split and Rijeka, and presents transformational processes in Croatian environment and the ways local practices deal with them.

Sights and Sounds of Croatia are displayed in a site-specifi c installation in Italian Pavilion, with a multi-channel audio and video projection (MUZIS), and the whole research-project In -Between is published in a book of the same title.

Press kit (pdf document, 120,519 kb)