Seven nomadic structures and a timeline of the Plečnik Stadium history are exhibited at MAO – Museum of Architecture and Design, together with a recording of the Stadium NOWHERE Walk in the city of Ljubljana.
Stadium NOWHERE unfolds the history of the Plečnik Stadium - a place unable to adapt to new demands. It´s a collaborative creation of a situation in the shape of seven nomadic structures, visualized, built and carried into the city to interact with public and the static buildings of Jože Plečnik.
The project produces a response no one has asked for to learn about society and its mechanisms. The current dispute around the redevelopment of the Stadium asks general questions about collective behaviour, rationales and ideals of society. Earlier, political systems and strong ideologies made dialogue difficult because of polarization and the determinate solutions embedded in these ideologies. With today’s complex reality a dialogue that comes before political decisions is fundamental.
Stadium NOWHERE is an architectural research by Danish architect Gitte Juul in collaboration with architectural students from the University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Architecture.
The majority of Plečniks works in Ljubljana are timeless, still in use and having survived big changes in society without loosing their integrity. But not the Stadium. It has been abandoned and fenced off since 2007, unable to adapt to new demands. It is torn between different planning interests, cultural heritage values, understandings of the law and blame for the blocked situation. Local citizens are fighting for their piece of land and for the protection of the Stadium in its original form, whereas an investor wants to update the Stadium to new commercial standards. Between these two opposites, the Institute of Cultural Heritage Protection is positioned and expected to protect the work of Jože Plečnik, since the Stadium got status as a monument of National Importance. While the conflict continues the Stadium is left alone, unable to adapt.
Stadium NOWHERE is portraying history as an observation of both “historical moments” and everyday occurrences. Architectural visions, religious ceremonies, military ceremonies, sporting events, commercialization, cultural heritage issues and environmental/ neighbourhood issues are experienced via seven physical structures, created by architectural students:
- House of Landscape is an enclosed space visualizing the Stadium as a loop beginning in a gravel pit and going back to nature.
- House of Architecture & Urbanism presents the Stadiums connection to Plečniks plan for Ljubljana as a “New Athens”.
- House of Religion is bringing the religion out of the institution and onto the street – like a small Chapel.
- House of Military tells the story of how the Stadium was used as a backdrop for political ideologies.
- House of Sports & Commercialization sees the Stadium from the view of the spectator.
- House of Conflict shows a model of the Stadium built of elements, the visualizations of the investors project for the Stadium renovation and documents the five reasons why the Local Initiative is against the proposal.
- House of Nature is an open wall structure showing a herbarium of the wild plants growing at the Stadium and cultivated plants from the Fond Gardens on the other side of the Stadium Wall.
Workshop with students:
In order to explore the history of the stadium as a participatory experience, the project Stadium NOWHERE grew out of meetings and discussions with people and organisations directly involved in the conflict and it aimed to admit all the complexities of the encounters into the working process. I decided upon seven different aspects relating to the history of the stadium, which I then gave to the students and invited them to design and build seven nomadic physical structures from their own interpretation of history.
Architecture students Anja Jelen, Mojca Lebeničnik, Ana Skobe, Deja Đukić, Alja Cevc, Eva Polenik, Anja Jezernik Knaus, Urša Rot, Leonard Krišto, Katja Lipič, Neža Lazar, Mojca Kostevc, Urška Cvikl, Amadeja Belej, Katja Klančnik, Vika Lenassi, Eva Razložnik, Jaka Černe , David Groleger, Rok Lovšin, Katja Marinič, Isidora Todorić, Barbara Butara, Domagoj Gržanić, Darko Gavrilovic, Sabina Černič, David Dan Mrevlje Natlačen, Žan Šabeder for creating the seven nomadic structures.
MAO – Museum of Architecture & Design, for inviting Stadium NOWHERE to exhibit at MAO and for providing second hand building materials.
Matevz Juvancic, Faculty of architecture , for building assistance.
Museum of Recent History for providing historical photographs of the Stadium.
The Local Initiative / http://www.iztepac.net and Bežigrajski športni park d.o.o. for delivering texts and images for House of Conflict.
Tanja Lazetic and Ana Skobe for still photographs of Stadium NOWHERE Walk.
The research leading to these results has received funding from the People Programme (Marie Curie Actions) of the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under REA grant agreement n° 317325.