The (almost) Complete Guide to Events and Exhibitions at Zagreb’s 11th Night of Museums

Night of Museums is one of the biggest annual cultural events in Zagreb with more than forty institutions, from museums, galleries, foundations to churches, private collections and archives, participating in the event with their special programs. Starting tonight, January 29th, at 6pm, all those institutions will open their doors for free to everyone. Zagreb’s high schools are pitching in with students that will be guides and hosts in museums. Almost every institution will have concerts, workshops, lectures, special exhibitions, historical cosplay guides, food tastings, photo booths, discounts and many other activities. That’s a lot to take in, and there’s too little time to check them all out.

That’s why we made this almost complete guide. We’ve left out some institutions that solely focus on lectures, documents and other activities that rely on people being proficient in Croatian language. Every other institution is featured in the guide.

A few word to the wise: dress in layers, you’ll stand in lines outside and mingle in heated and crowded rooms. Take a bottle of water with you. Be prepared to practice your patience at some of the more popular museums. Most of all, have fun!

Night of Museums ends at 1 am.


Ilica street 80

academy of fine arts

Academy of Fine Arts is having a little walk down memory lane with five exhibitions, three projections and eight workshops from their former students (the exhibitions feature works from their current students as well). Visitors will be able to see what the students have been doing in the fields of painting, sculpture and graphics with projections of films made by students of animation and new media. Workshops include those on illustration, silkscreen and intaglio printing, masonry, painting workshops for children…and if you’re lucky you might end up going home with a portrait made by one of the students of fine arts.


Nikola Subic Zrinski square 19

museum of archeology

Museum of Archaeology is commemorating  150th year since the passing of Mijat Sabljar with a newly opened historical corner. Sabljar was the founder of the Folk Museum, the oldest such institution in Zagreb, from which the Museum of Archaeology was created.  Visitors can also see the current exhibition Aquae Iasae featuring excavations from an ancient roman complex of shrines, take a virtual tour of a shrine with Oculus Rifts, or check out many other things from the museum’s 40 000 items strong permanent exhibition.


Ilica 17

toso dabac

The godfather of photography in Croatia has left more than 200 000 negatives of his work, now documented in the most extensive archive of its kind in the world. Photos made in Zagreb take up the biggest part of the collection, from portraits, intimate moments and art pieces to fragments of city life, landscapes and folklore. The archive holds works from other masters of photography as well. For the Museum Night, the Archives will present items from their permanent exhibition and photographs made during workshops at the Text and the City annual exhibition of the Archives in the Museum of Contemporary Art last year.


CRKVA SVETOG BLAŽA (Church of St. Blais)
Prilaz Gjure Dezelica 64

first nativity scene

The church itself is a monument of architecture in Zagreb, created by Viktor Kovačić, considered by many to be the father of modern architecture in Croatia. The church is going to display the oldest nativity scene in Croatia, created in 1916 by sculptor Vojta Braniš. The scene combines standard nativity themes with those from local folklore and is full of details. A concert of classical music on organs will be held at 8pm.


Mazuranic square 14

etnografski muzej

The museum is backing up their permanent exhibition Cultures of the World with two more: Traditional folklore wares in Croatia and Supernatural beings and beliefs in Podravina region. Kids will be able to get their faces painted and all the workers will be dressed as faeries and founders of the museum. The museum will hold a dulcimer concert at 8:30, 9:30 and 10:30 pm by Alan Kanski titled Podravina motifs.


Unska street 3


The faculty is preparing an interactive and educational exhibition on history of computers and information sciences with many lectures and hands on tours of dated technologies including presentations from Branimir Makanc, the creator of Ivel Ultra, the first commercially made computer in Croatia. Old school gaming sessions will also be held, featuring classics like Space Invaders, Super Mario, Pacman and others.


Jezuitski square 4

klovicevi dvori

Klovicevi Dvori are pulling out works from their foundation that most of the public hadn’t seen before. The focus is on works that came from private donors for safe keeping and the goal is to start a conversation on importance of individuals in safeguarding cultural heritage and progressing of the culture trough cooperation with individuals and institutions. Works from students of School for Fashion and Design will also be displayed in the gallery while DJ Pill Jackson will be in charge of the musical program in the atrium of the gallery.


Stara Tresnjevka park 1

texture files

Modulor will present different textures on clay tablets created during Terracotta workshops hosted by Lidija Boševski that featured artists from different fields. Texture Files, as the exhibition and workshop is called, presents different textures that can be found in nature, and that can ‘besides providing new tactile and visual experiences, help develop a sense for composition, balance, structure and graphism’. The same workshop, albeit crush course,  will be held on the Museum Nights where visitors can participate in imprinting textures on clay.


Petra Preradovića street 6

galerija remek djela

A joint exhibition named From Bukovac to Dolić will feature works from the galleries private holdings, with more than forty master artists present in the exhibition. A jazz concert will be held throughout the night and artist Marc Antonio Cinotti will create ad hoc caricatures for visitors.


Besericekova street 22

mijo kovačić

Mio Kovačić is often called the bard of Croatian Naïve art, an  art style that produced many master in its time. The privately owned foundation will present the works of the bard to the public and feature films about his life and work.


Medvedgradska street 2


Aside from their current permanent exhibition featuring a collection of plaques and medallions from the 19th and 20th century, visitors can see a collection of works from the master sculptor Ivan Meštrović that have erotic motifs and an exhibition of paintings made by Boris Bućan who’s latest acrylic painting capture everyday moments distorted by the painter’s imagination. A jazz concert from the band Jantar will start at 10 pm in the inner courtyard of the museum.


Sv. Ciril i Metod street 3


The museum will display Croatian Naïve art masterpieces from their permanent collection with a special presentation of Krsto Hegedušić‘s masterpiece Requisition created in 1933.  Artist Stjepan Ivanec will have a live presentation of glass panting techniques.


Anton Gustav Matoš street 9


The museum will preview its upcoming exhibition ’45 that starts on February 16th. The exhibition explores the main events and changes that happened that year in political, military, social, cultural, scientific and everyday life. It’s the year Croatia started as an occupied quisling state, continued as part of Democratic Federation of Yugoslavia and ended up in communist Federation of People’s Republics Yugoslavia. Visitors will be able to hear testimonies from people that lived in all those states and hear a playlist of the greatest hits from that year.


Demetrova street 1


Aside from permanent exhibition of mineral, petrographic  and zoology exhibits, the museum will also feature their most successful exhibits from last year, including Zagreb in Stone, The Animal Kingdom and Metamorphosis- a dream of a gluttonous caterpillar.  There will be a DNA booth where people can, trough interaction with different elements, learn how the DNA strand functions, with fire breathers and DJs in charge of entertainment.


Zrtava fasizma square 16

pucanj u prazno

Pucanj u Prazno (Shot in the Dark) is an interactive performance piece by Martina Miholić and Mia Orsag. Five hundred helium balloons will be let loose in the gallery, each holding a name of a living artist nominated by the public, who will then proceed to shoot down those balloons with an air rifle. The performance wants to put forward the questions of relations between artists, public, curators and position of those groups in creating and sustaining art.


Jurisiceva street 13

ht muzej

The museum holds a collection of telecommunication devices from the mid 19th century up until today, with many of them still functional and available for the public to try, from manual phone centrals to booths.


J.J.Strossmayer square


The graphic cabinet of Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts (HAZU) is hosting an exhibition of graphic designer and painter Nada Falout‘s posters created for theaters. The late Falout is one of the earliest female graphic designers in Croatia and has helped shape the visual identity of the theater and cultural scene in Zagreb. Visitors will be able to buy discount reprints of her trippy and baroque like posters for play premieres at the National Theater.


J.J. Strossmayer square 14


Artist Frane Paro will showcase how the first books were printed on a Gutenberg press replica while the guests can participate in workshops about book binding, typography, illumination, and other old school printing techniques.


Andrije Hebranga street 1


Aside from Modern gallery’s current exhibition Croatian Fine Arts 19th – 21st Century, there will be a special focus on J.J Strossmayer, or rather, on artist who made portraits of the founder of national sciences and arts institutions. Different representations of the bishop will include paintings, sculptures, medallions…


Avenija Dubrovnik 17

pmp msu

There’s a lot going on at MSU during the night, starting from the exhibition Memories of a Pianist that features works from Marija Novaković, one of the leading artist from the ‘ousider art’ movement. Novaković graduated piano and opera singing at the Vienna conservatory, but ended up in a psychiatric ward for thirty years. There she painted as part of her therapy and had shown incredible talent she honed trough her time spent there. Pimp my Pump collective will reveal their new mural at 10 pm; Is This Art? will feature contemporary works that usually make the publi wonder why they are considered art; From 7 to 8 pm one of the most successful architect studios, 3LHD, will present their best works; Jadran Mihelčić, a 11 years old piano prodigy will hold an half hour concert starting at 7:30pm, Performing Arts Program will feature a dance performance Sculpted Body, Dance Installation from 9:15 to 9:45 pm; MSU will present Slovenia’s most prominent contemporary artist, Todej Pogarač, and his  socially engaging works from the 1970s. DJ M.I.L.E will entertain guests at the atrium of the museum.


Ljudevita Posavskog street 48

bište ljudi ide auto

The Car Museum holds a variety of old timer models from across the 20th century with special focus for the Night of Museums on Nikola Tesla and electric old timers, like the one he rode in 1933, and other models that lead up to, well, Tesla electric cars.


MUZEJ GRADA ZAGREBA (Zagreb City Museum)
Opaticka street 20


Different historical figures will welcome and guide visitors trough the museum’s current exhibition The Holy Places of Old Zagreb -Zagreb Pilgrimages in 17th and 18th century. The museum has also prepared previews of their upcoming exhibitions in 2016: Living paintings 2016; Budinjak Necropolis: 20 years of excavations; St Blais Church from 19th to 21st century; Time of Giants: Zagreb’s industrial heritage; Rudolf Matz: Zagreb’s all around singer (performance of his songs by Sloboda choir at 7pm); Ruža Cvjetičanin: the gem of opera /Zagreb’s golden age of opera (performances of different operettas on every full hour starting from 8pm).


Roosevelt square 5


Mimara is hosting a few exhibitions for the Night of Museums including the permanent one of items donated by Ante Topić Mimara (after whom the museum is named), Petar Jagetić‘s retrospective of photographs and an announcing exhibition of items from the soon to be opened Museum of mountaineering Ivanec. The musical program consists of two separate concerts: Young Musicians in the Museum featuring students of classical music from the Academy (8pm) and Ivanec folk songs interpreted by Sakcinski Ivanec ensemble (7-10:30pm).


Marshal Tito square 10


MUO is preparing a rich program for the Night of Museums starting with an exhibition of works from Milan Trenc under the title Politics. The exhibition focuses on his illustrations made for US political magazines. The comic book artist is internationally best known for those illustrations and the Night at the Museum children’s books. There’s also The Movable Eye: Italian kinetic art 1950 – 1970; Nika Radić: Doma; Romano Cagnoni: Križanja and the museum’s permanent exhibition


baruna Trenka 1

narodne nođnje

The workshop will present different traditional fol wardrobes worn in Zagreb and around it and their modern iterations worn by folk ensembles. One such ensemble, Sljeme, will hold a concert of folk songs from Šestine, once a village, now a neighborhood in Zagreb. The concert starts at 8pm.


Savska street 18


Technical museum mostly focuses on lectures in Croatian, but the Tesla cabinet, holding some of the experiments and inventions the genius created and the Planetarium are always fun to check out no matter your age. There’s also the mining, transport and transformative energy sections to explore. The museum closes one hour early, at 12 pm.


Kralja Drzislava street 3


Celebrating its first birthday, Oris decided do move away from architecture and asked architects around the world to do the same and send them things they did in 2015 that was not related to their professional work. The exhibition holds sketches, collages, photographs, videos, illustrations from different international architects like Álvaro Siza, Kengo Kuma, Odile Decq, Francisco Mangado, Smiljan Radić, Zaha Hadid…showcasing some of the ideas and problems architects tackled with in 2015.


Draskoviceva street 80/I


One of the few museums in Europe that explores impairments, the institution is dedicated to affirming and socially including blind people. For the Night of Museums they prepared an exhibition of contoured sculptures, photographs and paintings by locally famous photographer Lupino. The exhibitions deals with social inclusion and breaking taboos about blind people. The exhibition is adjusted for visually impaired.