June 16, 2011

Interesting Buildings in Kragujevac

Now that the traveling season starts and a few of my readers were asking for architectural tips outside from Belgrade, I decided to publish the most interesting buildings of smaller Serbian cities next to useful traveling information.

I started with Kragujevac and I choose the buildings that I like the most. Kragujevac is the center of the Sumadija region, the region that represent Serbia in all its stereotypes (for instance the Sumadija folk costume stands generally as illustration for Serbian national costume).

Blocks in Kragujevac (from flickr)

The architecture of Kragujevac is a mix of various styles: there are Oriental-Style buildings  (like the Amidža Konak from 1819-24) and Secession Style buildings  from 19th century. Then there are modern post-war concrete buildings (apartments to house those left homeless during World War II), high-rise commies (communist time blocks)  and some eye-catching buildings from the 70'ies (like the "Ipsilon" and the City Hall) that now characterize the city's panorama.

Kragujevac City Hall (Скупштина града)from Dinke at flickr

The Y - Building (Ипсилон) in Erdoglija District was built in the 70's and is Kragujevac's tallest building (60m, 17 floors)

Ipsilon Building from woodland at Skyscrapercity

The Golden Rose Shopping Center "Златна Ружа" is a cool building, however it needs some remodeling work. (from Johnny-kg at skyscrapercity)

Fire station in ulica Miloja Pavlovića (Ватрогасци дом) picture from skyscrapercity. Below an old picture of the building.

The fire station is a modernist building from 1932 (built in less than one year!)after the project of Đorđe Kovaljevski i Mihailo Radovanović, two Belgrade architects.

The "Zastava"-Building is a good example of soc-realism. (Picture from kawasaki KG at skyscrapercity)

The history behind the building and what happened to the Zastava Industry is a bit complexer. In a very simple and short form I see it like this: The biggest and flourishing Industry that produced some Yugoslavian legendary cars was wrecked by NATO bombings and later through Embargo  and Sanctions. Now Italy (who 11 years ago was bombing the buildings) is trying to produce FIAT cars in these buildings, to make cheaper production with cheap Serbian workers and taking away the works to many Torino based workers in Italy…..but that's business…
Main site of Zastava

An interesting building (I already wrote about this one here) is located a little outside Kragujevac in the Šumarice Memorial Park (Меморијални парк Шумарице), is the Museum of Genocide, on the site where  in WW II between 2'300 and 7'000 men and boys (the numbers differs a lot from source to source, but that's another issue…) were executed by the German occupation forces on October 20, 1941.
The project is made by Ivan Antic.
Antic designed the Museum of the Genocide in 1967. The grandness of the monumental building is emphasized by a series of tall pillar-like rectangular shapes, the tallest ones on the central part from which go the same ones of various height with massive parts of the walls built in brick.
The modern expression relates to medieval sacral architecture, and the symbol of the Museum of the Genocide is even stronger in the interior which lets natural light from roof lanterns, connecting the view to the skies with earthly life: the building and the crypt.

On May 14th 1999 due to the detonation of NATO attacks in the nearest vicinity the facades of the Museum were damaged and all glazed panels and roof lanterns destroyed. The nearby building of the Archives was badly damaged. (picture from skyscrapercity)

There is also a famous monument called "Broken Wings"-Monument created in 1963 by Serbian sculptor Miodrag Zivkovic.
 The monument is dedicated to the killed schoolchildren and their teachers.
"Broken wings" monument in Sumarice memorial park (picture from Balkanforum)

Here a few links with travel tips for Kragujevac:


And here a cool blog from JohnnyKG  that has pictures and further Kragujevac links.
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  1. endria™June 23, 2011

    Attendo trepidante altri post estivi pro giri vacanzieri.

    sempre complimenti!


  2. Grazie Andrea!
    .....sto preparandoli....

  3. this is where my grandma comes from!!! aaaaaaaaaaaaah!
    Скупштина града rules!

  4. Kragujevac also has cool buildings from the Turkish era, like the Lovac restaurant: http://is.gd/0BCy9n

  5. @Ms Larsen:yes, yes, now I remember, you told me that! Also love Skupstina Buidling.....

    @Daniel: thanks, love that style of buildings as well...I'm planning to make a post about Turkish influenced architecture in SRB...like the Lovac Restoran

  6. You made a huge effort to express all that information so shortly in order to make it more comprehensive. Thanks a lot for giving us these useful tips and advice.

  7. Cheers!