Actors and Vehicles of Architectural Criticism (2)

The Role of Architectural Journals between Medium and the Message
Jasna Galjer
University of Zagreb

The paper explores the case studies of the professional journals in the context of promoting new architectural language and their multilayered roles; from defining new codes of architectural criticism, disseminating ideas and ideologies to the networking new internationalism in modern architecture (so-called “Cold War Modern”).
Unlike cultural anthropology and literary theory, historical surveys of the history of architecture in the socio-political frame of the former Yugoslavia left the “complexity and contradiction” of interactions between architecture, art, ideology and popular culture almost out of interest. Thus very little is known about the « mediatisation » of architectural discourse, such as the role of the journals, daily newspapers, exhibitions, paper architecture and other media of mass communication and their impacts on mapping transcultural modernist cultural paradigm.
By focusing on the internationally acclaimed modernist concept of the synthesis of art, architecture and design as one of the main aspects of critical and theoretical discourse, I intend to show how it generated modernist architectural language in the socialist society of Yugoslavia, deeply rooted in-between East and West.
The aim is to define the position of architectural turn to modernist cultural paradigm as an expression of the awareness of the need to promote one’s own cultural and political identity. Thus, the paper would contribute to the critical redefinition of the new concept of the architectural journals in the the 50s and 60s, when these ideas were transferred from the individual, experimental, conceptual and performative to the level of mass production by being recognized and evaluated through this medium. Applying methodological apparatus of cultural studies, the aim is to trace the problematic aspects of “the great divide » proposed to exist between the modes of cultural practice, and of public discourses as discussed by Jürgen Habermas, especially concerning the role of the key aspects and changes of the media in creating and reconstructing the link to contemporary « periodical codes » and binary oppositions of so-called “typologies of criticism”.


BA in Art History and Comparative Literature from Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb, University of Zagreb, MA and PhD from the above mentioned Faculty.
1987-2001 employed in Museum of Applied Arts in Zagreb, as a curator of the collections design and architecture, from 1999 museum advisor. Curated several exhibitions on architectural history, design history and cultural history, participated in more than 30 professional and scientific conferences, among others: European Association for Urban History EAUH Lyon 2008, CAA New York 2015, Les années 1910. Arts décoratifs, mode, design Paris, 2016.
From 2001 employed at the Department of Art History, University of Zagreb, since January 2014 full professor. Academic year 2006-2007 She spent on postdoctoral scholarship at the Faculty of Architecture and Urbanism at the University of Ghent, Belgium. From 2010 the head of the Department of art theory. Curated more than 30 exhibitions, among others Art Deco and Art in Croatia between the Two Wars (Museum of Applied Arts, Zagreb, 2011). Published several books, among others Design of the Fifties in Croatia : From Utopia to Reality (2004) and Modern Journals and Cultural History in Croatia 1890-1940 (2012).
To book Expo 58 and the Yugoslav pavilion of Vjenceslav Richter She won the annual national award for science in 2009 year.
Invited scholar at the Institut national d’histoire de l’art (INHA), Paris for 2015 (the topic of the research: French influences and the continuity of modernism in Croatian architecture).


Image caption
Casabella Continuità no. 255, 1961.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.