The Motovun Encounters


The Motovun Encounters is an international group exhibition dedicated to the research of artist encounters in Motovun. Taking a retrospective view of the history of The Motovun Encounters, and relying on museum documentation, archival materials and selected works of art from different museum collections, it gives an overview of the international manifestation, contributing to its research valorization and contextualization

The Motovun Encounters, organized as international meetings of visual artists, were theme-based events held between 1972 and 1984 in Motovun, Istria. Throughout this period, 11 meetings of artists of different poetics, generations and backgrounds took place: Landscape, 1972; Nude, 1973; Urban Intervention Project, 1974; Identity, 1976; New Landscape, Photography and Polaroid, 1977; Silkscreen Printing, 1978; Paper transformations, 1979; Young 80 (New Painting), 1980; New Sculpture, 1981; On Paper, 1983; and Postmodern Architecture and Motovun Architectural Heritage, 1984. More than 120 artists participated in the events. The meetings were co-organized by the Galleria del Cavallino from Venice and Ethnographic Museum from Pazin, and, joining the endeavor in 1976, the City Gallery of Contemporary Art (today MSU).

Connecting local artists with young and emerging as well as established artists, both Croatian and international, The Motovun Encounters gathered over the years the following artistic positions: Marina Abramović, Claudio Ambrosini, Bojan Bem, Zvjezdana Fio, Tomislav Gotovac, Sanja Iveković, Nina Ivančić, Jagoda Kaloper, Ivan Kožarić, Živa Kraus, Jusuf Hadžifejzović, Julija Lozzi, Dalibor Martinis, Zdravko Milić, Dora Maurer, François Morellet, Michele Sambin, Duba Sambolec, Mauro Stipanov, Mladen Stilinović, Ulay, Goran Trbuljak, Luigi Viola and others.

The story of The Motovun Encounters is presented now through inter-museum and international collaborations, bringing together artists and artworks, art institutions, art collections and curators. It speaks about artists working together, focusing among else on the history of exhibitions and the history of art institutions. The Motovun Encounters are part of the art and institutional memory of Istria and Croatia, placed in the context of the development of contemporary art and the international networking of artists and institutions in SFRY in the second half of the 20th century. The encounters opened new possibilities of collaboration between the Italian and Yugoslav artists and enabled the internationalization of artistic space. It supported interest in contemporary art practices and the latest events in art, creating a platform for meetings and exchange of ideas and work, offering new opportunities for the new generation of artists and curators.

Opening: 12/9/2023, at 8 pm

As a project of inter-museum collaboration, the exhibition is realized by the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Rijeka, the Pazin City Museum, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb.

Curated by Branka Benčić; Curatorial associate: Iva Kelentrić (MMSU), in collaboration with Maja Pilat Zidarić (MGP) and Jasna Jakšić (MSU).

Design and exhibition setup: Ana Tomić and Marino Krstačić-Furić

The exhibition is financed by the City of Rijeka, the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, the County of Istria, Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, the City of Pazin and the City of Zagreb.

Photo: Poster for the 4th exhibition of The Motovun Encounters.


Opening: 12/9/2023, at 8 pm