5 Reasons to Visit the ‘Spirit of Place – A Century of the District’ Exhibition

The former neglected industrial complex In Liman, with dilapidated and old factories, which were silent guardians of the city’s heritage, is today one of the most promising centres for cultural production. District, as the name suggests, is the new quarter of the city’s alternative art scene and home to organizations and independent artists. The spirit of the place is reflected in a century-long, tumultuous history, which is worth getting to know.

Memories of the past and the time when Novi Sad’s industrialization flourished in the years before the terrible war years – have not faded, and all thanks to the multimedia exhibition Spirit of Place – A Century of the District, by Monika Bilbija Ponjavić, PhD, and Nemanja Milenković. Most people are not familiar with the rich history of the District and Great Liman, and this is key to understanding the importance of the area, primarily its intangible heritage. The unique permanent exhibition is located in the Fabrika 2 facility, and is open to visitors from Wednesday to Sunday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Covering the period from the first decades of the last century to the present, the exhibition is divided into six artistic units, each representing a key chapter in history.

#1 Be a part of history

The interactive multimedia exhibition right at the entrance gives you the opportunity to play with a map of the District and see the decades of changes that have shaped the place. We invite you to discover the fate of the Kramer brothers, the pioneers of industrialization in this area, using the hammer as a tool for deeper understanding.

#2 Experience first-hand the personal stories of historical figures

What sets this permanent exhibition apart is the focus on stories and creating new experiences instead of a dull presentation of facts and artifacts. Through the use of audio-visual technology, visitors can peek into intimate stories, including the story of a mother who shares her painful fate of lost children’s lives during the terrible Raid in Novi Sad.

#3 Cross the road from the former Chinatown to the new centre of contemporary creativity

The key feature of the exhibition is its multimedia approach, which is why it attracts a lot of public attention. It is also interesting that you will get to know the history of the District through six thematic units, following the transformation of the area from the establishment of the factory, through World War II and NATO bombing, to the European Capital of Culture. Find out why this part of the city was once called Chinatown and how it evolved into the District.

#4 Learn about the place in the context of world events

The exhibition does not only represent local history, but provides an insight into global changes that influenced the industrial development of Novi Sad and the District, reflecting cause-and-effect relationships with world events.

#5 Touch the history

Through the room wrapped in chains and through the story of the career path of Lazar Jovanov, who was first a locksmith, and then the director and engineer of the factory, visitors can feel the spirit of the former workshops for the production of wire mesh, which were unique in the Kingdom of SHS. At the exhibition, you can also see the Melina Mercoury Prize, which is awarded to the most successful European Capitals of Culture, thus writing a new page in the history of Novi Sad and the District.

+ Let’s get to know the history of the District the other way

The history of the District is also presented at the very entrance, more precisely on the walls of the Proizvodnja facility. Artists Artez, Nataša Konjević and Pablo Atrain visually connected the hundred-year history of the place into one whole and thus told the story of this significant Novi Sad neighborhood. Take a walk through the District and discover the murals of these artists, and dive into the history of the place by visiting the Spirit of Place – A Century of the District exhibition.

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