The bronze statue of the young athlete Apoxyomenos is a unique find not only in the Adriatic Sea, but also in the world. It was found on the seabed off the isle of Vele Orjule near Mali Lošinj at a depth of 45 metres. The statue was discovered extant, with only the little finger of the left hand missing, and part of the original bronze plinth, which was separated from the statue, was still attached to the sole of the right foot.
The statue was taken out of the sea on April 27th 1999. It is an extremely well-preserved and beautifully crafted Greek work of great artistic value which is presumed to date back to the 2nd or 1st century BC. The project of recovering the statue from the sea, as well as the conservation and restoration work, the research and the presentation of the statue was made possible thanks to the funding of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia and the donation made by the British company Oxford Maritime Ltd. The Conservation and restoration work began in 2000 and was done in the Croatian Conservation Institute in Zagreb. The work was managed by the late restorer Giuliano Tordi, formerly of the Opificio delle Pietre Dure in Florence, in collaboration with the master-restorer Antonio Šerbetić, head of the Croatian Conservation Institute’s Workshop for Metal. The work was finalised after six years.
Conservation and restoration works on the statue:
Croatian Conservation Institute (Giuliano Tordi, Antonio Šerbetić, Ivan Fočić and Željko Tarandek)
Apoxyomenos statue installation:
Croatian Conservation Institute (Antonio Šerbetić, Ivan Fočić and Dragutin Furdi) and Gallery Klovićevi dvori (Dragutin Matas and Davor Markotić)
Croatian Conservation Institute (Marin Barišić, Mate Roščić and Ivan Sikavica) / Project of pedestal: Stipe Lucić Kamenarski centrar i klesarstvo d.o.o. Samobor
The concept of the architecture of the Museum of Apoxyomenos tries to answer the question on how to present one perfect sculpture, which is now displayed out of every context, both in time and space where it used to belong. Designing exciting and comprehensive museum display Apoxyomenos and his story are shown to the wide public audience.
Concept of the museum
The Museum of Apoxyomenos and its exhibition represent the spatial materialisation of the ceremony of passing through various rooms and halls on the way to the sculpture. The architecturally shaped body of the new Museum has been inserted in a space defined by the exterior walls and the roof of the existing Kvarner Palace.
The exhibition display is defined by the idea of passing through the building by visiting nine scenes and transition zones shaped by time and space. By visiting and experiencing those various, dynamic and impressive rooms, as well as by getting acquainted with their content, the visitors are getting ready for the final scene: a room whose only tenant is the bronze sculpture. After meeting the sculpture the visitors get to experience one final emotion in a viewpoint at the top of the Museum, where various sequences from the Lošinj harbour are reflected in the mirrors on the ceiling.
Museum of Apoxyomenos project associates
Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia and the Town of Mali Lošinj
COORDINATION OF MUSEUM’S DISPLAY AND REALISATION:
Miljenko Domijan, project coordinator (Ministry of Culture) Gari Capelli and Ana Kučić (Town of Mali Lošinj), Idis Turato, Turato (Turato Architects), Iskra Karniš Vidovič (Croatian Conservation Institute)
INVESTORS PROJECT MANAGER:
Ana Kučić (Town of Mali Lošinj)
AUTHORS OF THE PROJECT: Idis Turato and Saša Randić
CURATOR OF INTERIOR DESIGNERS AND CONCEPT OF THE INTERIOR: Idis Turato
MUSEUM'S PERMANENT DISPLAY CONCEPT:
Iskra Karniš Vidovič, Croatian Conservation Institute / Textile installation in the White Room: Vanja Ilić with Donasy Atelier / Concept and design of the Colourful Room: Kulenturato (David Kulen, Nora Turato) / Concept and design of the Yellow Room: MKF&AT (Marino Krstačić-Furić and Ana Tomić) and Bosnić+Dorotić (Maja Bosnić and Ivan Dorotić)
COLLABORATORS IN PROJECT COMPETITION ENTRY PHASE: Janko Jelić, Hrvoje Sedlić, Andrija Čuljak and Damir Šiljeg / COLLABORATORS IN CONSTRUCTION DOCUMENTS PHASE: Ana Staničić i Josip Mičetić / STRUCTURE DESIGNERS: Boris Kirinčić, Ivan Arbanas / PROJECT ARCHITECT'S HEAD CONSULTANT: Miljenko Domijan / PROJECT ARCHITECT'S ART CONSULTANT: Nicholas Riis / PROJECT ARCHITECT'S CONSULTANT: Ivan Dorotić
CONCEPT AND DESIGN FOR BOTANICAL SHOWCASE IN OLIVE PASSAGE: Nikolina Jelavić Mitrović / BLACK ROOM DISPLAY PANEL DESIGN: Nikolina Jelavić Mitrović / MUSEUM’S VISUAL IDENTITY: Luka Predragović / AUDIO INSTALLATIONS: Nora Turato / FURNITURE, SHOWCASES AND CURTAINS DESIGN: Svjetlana Despot, Data by Despot
GENERAL CONTRACTOR: Radnik d.d., Križevci / MAIN SUPERVISING ENGINEER: Davor Matika, DE FINNI d.o.o. / SITE MANAGER ENGINEER: Zvonko Kunović / HEAD OF CONSTRUCTION: Ivica Pejić / MAIN SUPERVISING ENGINEER COLLABORATORS: Amir Jelača, Vlado Glavaš, Milan Marić
Museum of Apoxyomenos is located in the Kvarner palace, on the waterfront in the Town of Mali Lošinj, Croatia. It will be a permanent home for the statue of Apoxyomenos. After the discovery, than long restoration followed by presentation in a great number of Croatian cities as well as major world museums, the bronze sculpture of a young athlete returned to Lošinj, to his new home.
Anel Hasić, Specialist for technical support, maintenance and safety
Nikola Andrijčić, Museum technician
Staff collaborated in the first working season of the Museum of Apoxyomenos
Andrea Blažević, Managing Director, Head of Maketing
Lucija Kunda, Curator
Maritinela Dragičević, Guide for the group visits
Petra Dumenčić, Guide for the group visits
Design and development of the website: Shape404
Authors of the photographs: Maja Bosnić i Ivan Dorotić
Archeological drawings: Krešimir Jerko Rončević (Croatian Conservation Institute)
Architectural drawings: Turato Architects
- THE EUROPEAN HERITAGE AWARDS / EUROPA NOSTRA AWARD 2006 IN THE ART RESTORATION CATEGORY
- THE MUSEUM WAS NOMINATED FOR THE "ŽIVA" AWARD 2017 FOR THE BEST SLAVIC MUSEUM.
- THE MUSEUM WAS NOMINATED FOR THE BEST EUROPEAN MUSEUM IN 2018, 2020 AND 2021 (EUROPEAN MUSEUM ACADEMY AWARDS)
- IT WON THE GOLDEN PLAQUE OF THE INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL TOURISM AWARD "PLAUTILLA" IN 2019
- IT RECEIVED A SPECIAL COMMENDATION FOR THE MOST INNOVATIVE AND CREATIVE PERMANENT EXHIBITION AT THE EUROPEAN MUSEUM OF THE YEAR AWARD CEREMONY IN 2019