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Splošne informacije o projektu / General info about the project


Naslov projekta / Project title: Comparison of Croatian and Slovenian conservators Ljubo Karaman and France Stele in the context of Vienna School of Art history
Akronim porjekta / Project acronym: CCScVienna
Trajanje projekta / Project duration: 1.6.2014 - 31.5.2017; 36 mesecev / months 
Raziskovalno področje / Research area and code: Humanistika in družboslovje / Social Sciences and Humanities (SOC)
Vrsta raziskave / Category of research: Razvojna / Developmental
Mentorica / Scietist in charge: prof. dr. Ana Sonja Hoyer 
Raziskovalka / Researcher: mag. Ivana Unković 
Financer / Financed by: Program financira shema NEWFELPRO programme 2013-2017. / The project is financed by NEWFELPRO programme 2013-2017.




Povzetek projekta / Project summary

Background and focus of the project

The professional relationship of conservators Ljubo Karaman and France Stele and the comparison of their conservation methodology approach in practice have not yet been investigated, and are crucial for better documentation of the development of conservation practices in the Croatian and Slovenian regions, which, in turn, provides the crucial insight of the influence of Vienna school of art history on ex-Yugoslav regions. The focus of the project is to investigate and compare the history and theory of the monument protection in Croatia and Slovenia through the work of conservators and art historians Ljubo Karaman and France Stele, focusing on the period after the collapse of Austrian Hungarian Monarchy until the end of the 2nd World War. One part of the research will be focused on their conservation education at the Vienna School of Arts.

Research objectives

The objective is to fully and systematically complete the comparison of conservators Ljubo Karaman and France Stele. A crucial part for achieving this objective will be to locate all the unknown information regarding their schooling in Vienna. The tertiary objective is to produce a chronological list containing a short overview of the restored artworks in Slovenia and Croatia restored by the restorer Matej Sternen in the first half of the 20th century, leaning on a relatively unknown fact is that the restorer Matej Sternen had collaborated with both France Stele and Ljubo Karaman.

Relationship to 'state of the art' knowledge on the research topic

The project emphasizes the application of the art historical, historical (especially political) and contemporary influences in Europe in the protection of Slovenian and Croatian monuments during the period between the two World Wars. This aspect has to be defined through this project and it is applicable to history, political science and theory and history of restoration practice. With the help of the systematic database containing information on used restoration materials and methodology in the 1st half of the 20th century, the restoration procedures would be documented more efficiently and easier to understand by restorers, conservators, art historians and historians, offering further possibilities for knowledge transfer to public (through publications, posters and exhibitions).

Expected results

At its conclusion, the project is expected to unite all the information regarding conservation methodology approaches in the regions of Croatia and Slovenia in the period between the two World Wars with the goal to clarify the chronological development of the conservation profession in one of the former Yugoslavia regions. Students will be provided access to the material and high quality courses. Public lectures will be held for wider professional audience with the goal of recognizing the interdisciplinarity aspect of the matter. This will provide opportunities for further cooperation of Slovenian, Croatian and Austrian institutions, professionals and students (Universities, Conservation and Restoration Institutes). The results of the research will yield publications, joint publications and will provide a foundation for a book regarding the history and theory of Slovenian and Croatian cultural heritage preservation methodology.

Significance and innovation of the research

Once completed, the project will shed a new light on the previously unexplored aspect of conservation history in ex-Yugoslav region on a larger scale, while greatly enriching the existing documentation on the Croatian and Slovenian conservation practices development. Through international publications and lectures, broaden the circle of connoisseurs of the conservation activities of Ljubo Karaman and France Stele and its vast history.


Prihodnje in pretekle aktivnosti / Future and past activities 


  • Announced participation at the International Conference: Catastrophe and Challenge: Cultural Heritage in Post-Conflict Recovery, Fourth HCSM Conference Cottbus, 5–7 December 2016. More

  • As a part of her project, with the intended to share the knowledge obtained during her research to the colleagues and wider public, Ivana has brought an international project to the Department of Art History - summer school and workshop for Students and Professionals in Art History, Architecture, Archaeology, Conservation and Restoration of the Monuments. 

    From 25-29 July 2016 with the collaboration of assistant professor arch. Muhammad Eldaidamony from the Higher Technological Institute (Cairo, Egypt) and associate prof. PhD Zsolt Vasáros, Faculty of Architecture, Budapest University of Technology and Economic, Budapest (Hungary) 20 students were participating in Ljubljana from Egypt and Slovenia. The students had the chance to learn about the History of Conservation in Slovenia. The results of the Students for the Summer school titled „Architecture Building Technologies and Heritage Conservation“ are published on future link.

  • After Ivana has successfully presented her research at the International Conference – Conservation of Architectural Heritage (23-27 November 2015, Luxor-Aswan, Egypt) she has been invited as a keynote speaker in February 2018 for the 2nd Conference- Conservation of Architectural Heritage. She has been also invited as a member of the Scientific Committee for the Conference “Cities’ Identity through Architecture and Arts“ (11-13 May 2017, Cairo, Egypt) and „Alternative and Renewable Energy Quest in Architecture and Urbanism“ (1-3 February 2017, Barcelona, Spain).

  • Thanks to visibility and the quality of the project, Ivana has also given the opportunity to be a permanent member of the Organising Committee of the International Conference for PhD Students and recent PhD Graduates in the Organisation of the Faculty of Arts (Ljubljana), Faculty of Humanistic and Social Sciences (Split, Croatia), Centre of the Iconographical Studies (Rijeka, Croatia) and Faculty of Philosophy (Belgrade, Serbia). This year she was the coordinator of the Conference „Migrations in Visual Culture“ held in Belgrade 8-10 September 2016. 
    Ivana is also included in the Organisation of the next year's Conference which is going to be held in Tbilisi (Georgia).

  • Ivana has given a presentation upon her research at the Symposium: “130 years of Birth Izidor Cankar, Vojeslav Mole and France Stele” (21-22 April 2016, Ljubljana). Her presentation titled: “Collaboration of France Stele and Ljubo Karaman as the main elements of the development of the Monument Protection in Yugoslavia” will be published by the end of 2016 in the Journal “Zbornik za umetnostno zgodovino” in the Organisation of the Slovene Art History Association.

  • By the invitation of prof. PhD Martin Germ, Vice Dean of the Faculty of Arts, Ivana is currently an editor of the Publication regarding the 2nd International Conference for PhD Students and recent PhD Graduates, held in Split 17-19 September 2016 thus connecting the collaboration of her Host and Return Host Institution during her project.

  • In March 2016 there was another interview with Ivana Nina Unkovic in the Marie Curie Alumni Association Newsletter. You can read about her very positive experience and given opportunity with the Faculty of Arts on this link.

  • Announced participation in The MSCA 2015 Conference, Luxembourg, November 10-11, 2015: a forum to discuss researchers’careers through the prism of the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions’ specific scheme: COFUND. More

  • Announced participation in Conservation of Architectural Heritage Conference, Luxor & Asuan, November 23-27, 2015: a forum to address the complex challenge of conserving architectural heritage through the conference to increase the awareness of how citizens should value and save our heritage more effectively. More

  • Ivana Nina Unković, #COFUND MSCA fellow of the week! More

  • Participation in IIC 2015 Student & Emerging Conservator Conference - Making the transition, Warsaw, Poland, from 15. 10. - 16. 10. 2015 with the title "Post-War Restoration of Monuments. Theory and Practice of the 20th Century". More

  • Participation in the conference in St. Petersburg, Russia, from 4. 12. - 6. 12. 2014 with the title "Post-War Restoration of Monuments. Theory and Practice of the 20th Century". More

  • Participation in the conference: Decline-Metamorphosis-Rebirth Conference in Vienna from  2.10. - 4.10. 2014 with the title: 50 jahre charta from Venedig – geschite, rezeption, perspektiven. More

  • Participation in  the EU-Russia Researchers' Mobility Forum on September 25th, 2014. More

  • An interview with Ivana Unković in October issue of  the Marie Curie Alumni Association's Newsletter about the project and her vision of her future research. You can read the whole newsletter here.