Continuation of Journey within Slovenia – June 9, 2018
6:9:11 – Inner and Outer Resources
This morning the Crystals and Crystal Skulls called again to walk and communicate together.
Woke up refreshed after a night of lightning and rain.
Seeing that the main theme and Ancient Codes today is to Be within Communication with Spirit we first started off visiting some churches in Ljubljana. Churches are usually build on a vortex and crossing of leylines. Along with this they are also build over Ancient Sacred Sites this is why I usually visit them to go into meditation and connect plus gather blessings for All.
Note: All images are from Google Images except the video recording of the music at the market. Thank you those that have shared these photographs.
It so happened that when I entered the “Franciscan Church” just before 10:00 a.m. there were already quite a few people in the church. A beautiful Organ started to play and a choir sang a classical song. It certainly touched the Heart area with the pureness of the vibrations.
General Information: The Franciscan Monastery and the Church of the Annunciation are the two buildings contributing most significantly to the appearance of the Prešernov trg square, the central square in Ljubljana. Until the end of the 18th century, the monastery was the home of Augustine monks. The Church of the Annunciation was built between 1646 and 1660. Its façade, completed around 1700, rebuilt in the 19th century and renovated in 1993, is adorned with a copper statue of St. Mary, Ljubljana’s largest Madonna statue.
The Church has a monumental main altar built by the sculptor Francesco Robba in the middel of the 18th century. The inside of the Church, painted with fresco’s by Matevž Langus in the mid-19th century, assumed its present appearance after the earthquake of 1895. Between 1935 and 1936, the Church ceiling was painted with fresco’s by Matej Sternen. In a dedicated chapel, there is a cross designed by the architect Jože Plečnik.
From there went to the “Cathedral Church of Sint Nicolas”. A very quiet and serene Church. Amazing art work as well.
General Information: The site of the Cathedral was originally occupied by a three-nave Romanic Church whose earliest mention dates back to 1262. After the fire of 1361 it was re-vaulted in the Gothic style. When the Ljubljana Diocese was established in 1461, the Church underwent several alterations and additions. In 1469 it was burnt down, presumably by the Turks.
Between 1701 and 1706, a new Baroque hall Church with side chapels shaped in the form of the Latin cross was built to a design by the Jesuit architect Andrea Pozzo. As the Church’s dome was only built in 1841, originally a fake dome was painted on the arch above the centre of the cross. The surviving Baroque interior decoration notably includes fresco’s by Giulio Quaglio (painted in the periods 1703-1706 and 1721-1723), Angelo Putti’s statues of four bishops of Emona situated beneath the beams of the dome (1712-1713), Putti’s painting of Dean Janez Anton Dolničar (1715), who initiated the rebuilding of the church in 1701, Francesco Robba’s altar angels in the left part of the nave (1745-1750) and brothers Paolo and Giuseppe Groppelli’s altar angels in the right part of the nave (1711).
A host of other works of art were added later. One of the more interesting is the dome fresco painted by Matevž Langus in 1844. The most outstanding 20th century additions include Tone Demšar’s main entrance door relief depicting the history of Slovenia, commissioned to mark the 1250th anniversary of Christianity in Slovenia, and Mirsad Begić’s side doors with portraits of bishops.
The third church we visited was “Ursuline Church of Holy Trinity”. A quaint silent place of peace. At the market place nearby there was some live music which distracted me so I stayed here for about 10 minutes.
General Information: Built between 1718 and 1726, it is one of the most unusual and most beautiful baroque monuments in the city. Traces of Italian baroque can be seen since the construction plans were entrusted to Carlo Martinuzzi the Furlanian architect. Besides the wavy roof and the frontal facade, some inner artistic masterpieces give the church its visual glory. A huge altar made of African marble was designed by Francesco Robba, the same artist that built the Fountain of the Three Rivers of Carniola, standing in front of the City House today (due to natural damage the original was replaced by a replica). The paintings on the side altars are work of the Slovenian painter Valentin Metzinger.
After the earthquake in 1895 the old bell tower was pulled down and a new one was built. The Staircase with balustrades in front of the church was arranged by Joze Plecnik in 1930. In front of the church and just across the road, the Holy Trinity Column can be seen, originally made of wood and placed in 1693 in thanks that the plague did not destroy the town.
Next area was the curiosity of Carla to see what kind of live music was present at the Market Place. Enjoyed the traditional Slovenia Music and my feet where into motion at this point as well.
Also at the market was some Biological Pizza, Fruit and Vegetables plus a delicious cake of coconut and chocolate nice and tasty, a combination of Breakfast and Lunch. Very busy at the Market and the atmosphere was One of Joy and Happiness.
From there we walked along the way to go to some Museums. How lovely the environment is in this city with many parks with old trees and flower/plant arrangements. Many pathways are only for pedestrians and bicycles so it is easy to walk in comfort.
The first Museum was a combination of the “National Museum of Slovenia” with the “Slovenian Museum of Natural History”.
The National Museum of Slovenia is in a centrally located neo-Renaissance palace built between 1883 and 1885. It keeps numerous important treasures of the world’s cultural heritage. One of the most outstanding is the 47,000-year-old Neanderthal flute from the Divje Babe excavation site. One of the spaces that impressed me was the Egyptian Mummy Room.
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On the first floor of the same building is the Slovenian Museum of Natural History. The Museum keeps permanent collections of geological and paleontological items, minerals, molluscs, insects, birds, reptiles and fishes. Visitors can also view various herbarium collections, a presentation of the olm (Proteus anguinus), and alpine wetland and forest dioramas.
Some main items we saw were dugout canoe from the Ljubljana Marsh, The flute from Divje Babe, Gold Ornaments from Bled, Boundary Stone, Ivory Dolls, Germanic Ornamentation from Carnium and Wooden traps from the Ljubljana Marsh.
Personal note: This was one of the favorite museums I visited today seeing that it had so many minerals in their raw nature. The crystals and crystal skulls that travelled with me today also were jumping for joy here as well. Outside was a nice park where I could eat more of my lunch and it was fascinating to see how many school students also were visiting here as well.
From here we walked to visit the Metelkova area.
General Information: Metelkova (full name in Slovene: Avtonomni kulturni center Metelkova mesto, “Metelkova City Autonomous Cultural Center”, referred to by the acronym AKC) is an autonomous social and cultural center in the city center of Ljubljana’s capital city. Formerly, the site was a military headquarter of the Army of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, then it became the Slovenian headquarter of the Yugoslav National Army. It consists of seven buildings (military barracks) extended over a total area of 12,500 m², which have been squatted since September 1993. The squat is named after nearby Metelko Street (Slovene: Metelkova ulica), which is named after the 19th-century Slovenian Roman Catholic priest, philologist, and unsuccessful language reformer Fran Metelko.
In 1991 the Network of Metelkova, composed of more than 200 alternative and youth organizations, asked the municipality of Ljubljana for permission to use those barracks for peaceful and creative purposes. As a response, Ljubljana authorities gave the Network for Metelkova formal permission to stay and use the site. Nevertheless, those promises given by the municipality were never really maintained. This example on the request for permission demonstrates the ambiguous role of the municipality of Ljubljana towards the Network for Metelkova, in which the municipality seems to allow them to stay there, but in fact she doesn’t want them to stay.
This ambiguous role of the municipality of Ljubljana regarding Metelkova and its Network has remained over the years. In 1993 the cultural center became a squat when a commissioner mandated the demolition of some barracks that were promised to the Network, with the aim of illegally reconverting the area into a commercial site. At that time, Metelkova came into being as an illegal occupation (a squat) and was redefined as a self-organized autonomous zone in 1995.
Since then, the center has been a site of tolerance of minorities, even though it is still threatened by the bad treatment it receives by the city and the Slovene state.
Another example of the ambiguity in state and municipality actions towards the Network for Metelkova and Metelkova itself are the subsidies from Ljubljana’s city administration for the construction of a little summer lodge also known as the Small School (from the Slovene: Mala Šola). Nevertheless, the lodge, planned and constructed in 2001 by volunteers, was immediately defined as abusive. In fact, the construction was followed by the request of its demolition, right after another municipal office reported it to the State Inspectorate for the Environment and Spatial Planning. After several failed attempts, the building was demolished on August 2, 2006. Although there are plans to rebuild the building, it has not been reconstructed since then.
In the 2000s, new actors became involved in the Metelkova autonomous zone, for example the LGBT community, other non-governmental organizations and even UNESCO. Although it did not help Metelkova to receive proper legal status, the area was recognized as a national cultural heritage back in 2005.
Metelkova and concepts of urbanism
Over the last few years Metelkova, like Christiania in Copenhagen, has been the subject of several studies and reflections on the phenomenon of squatting and on living with different laws and institutions that surround it. These districts mentioned above can be defined as heterotopic spaces since they have been present for decades in parallel to the cities of which they are legally part. Nevertheless, they are characterized by a particular relationship with the authorities of their cities in comparison to other districts.
Nowadays, it can be said that there are three different areas in Metelkova: one part is defined by art and social life, the second by civil engagement and the third is commercial; the squatters act in all three areas mentioned. Metelkova’s differentiation into three possible sub-entities can be seen through the arrival of different institutional actors in the neighborhood, such as the Museum of Contemporary Art, different NGOs and different commercial activities, such as the Hotel Celica, which reuses some of the areas of the old barracks.
Squatters represent the heart of the matter of legality and formality in Metelkova: the autonomous part is considered to be in a legal and administrative limbo defined through tolerance and legitimization toward city’s authority. A possible explanation for this situation is to be found in the nature of the squatting in Metelkova: in fact, the old buildings of the Yugoslav army are not occupied for the sole purpose of living there, but also for the aim of producing culture. From this perspective, it is possible to determine the beginning of the tolerance: since 1997, when Ljubljana was designated as the European Capital of Culture, Metelkova stopped hosting permanent residents, following an agreement reached with the municipality, whereby the city decided to dedicate the Metelkova buildings to the promotion of culture and art.
Finally, the example of Metelkova can be related to the concept of informality in order to explain the situation: at its very first beginning, Metelkova could be considered as completely informal since the occupation of the military warehouse by the squatters was considered illegal and not rules- and code-compliant. Nowadays the situation has slightly changed: the city of Ljubljana is now linked to the Metelkova’s site, for example thanks to the presence of different institutional actors. It is therefore possible to assume that the situation is constantly changing and that a part of Metelkova is actually normalized and institutionalized, despite the fact that the type of culture and urban development is still not compliant with building codes and urban planning regulation.
Personal note: It gives a kind of isolated and eerie feeling when you are walking there. Most unfortunate for those that have placed there love and energy into this area. Beautiful art work can be seen also the graffiti is fabulous.
Nearby is the Slovenian Ethnographic Museum. The Slovene Ethnographic Museum is a museum “about people, for people”, a museum of cultural identities, the link between the past and the present, between our own and other cultures, between nature and civilization. At this moment, the exhibitions are: “Between Nature and Culture” – The treasure house of Slovene and non-European heritage of the everyday and the festive. The next floor “I, We and Others”: Images of my World – an exhibition about man and his place in the world; about personal, communal and universal heritage.
Personal note: Certainly, inspiring open space to dwell and linger here. In this open space it was now around 15:00 hours and a signal to go back to the room to relax and integrate what has be shared and picked up.