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Highlights from 2023

Flora Turner updated her booklet Mapping Croatia in UK Collections, a comprehensive listing of works by Croatian artists in Britain. Because some Renaissance masters were hidden under Italian names, their Croatian identity is often not clear to see.

Getting Croatian writers translated and published in English is both a way of providing writers with a bigger audience as well as giving people in the UK an opportunity to understand Croatia better. Ivica Prtenjača came to London for a British-Croatian Society event to promote his new book translated into English Let’s Go Home, Son.

The contemporary writer Dubravka Ugrešić chose not to be narrowly defined as a Croatian writer, preferring to be seen in a wider international context as a European writer. In that spirit  the British-Croatian Society organised a round table Remembering Dubravka Ugrešić at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies.

Rebecca West, the author of Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, was also, but in a different way, controversial. Her 1930’s views on Yugoslavia were robust. Nick Allan came to the Society to talk about his book When Dreams Collide: Travels in Yugoslavia with Rebecca West.

Peter Frankopan, Professor of Global History at Oxford University, gave a sparkling wide ranging talk based on his new book, The Earth Transformed. It has been described as a “revolutionary new history that reveals how climate change has dramatically shaped the development—and demise—of civilisations across time”.

A new event in 2023 was a family excursion to Whitstable to visit the delightful cafe Amedea, the Half-Croatian cafe.

Ben Goldsmith of the Conservation Collective introduced their new project to create a Dalmatian Islands Environment Foundation.

Zagreb University Professor Maroje Mrduljaš gave an illustrated talk entitled The Sunny Side of Modernism: Tourist Architecture in Croatia 1950-2000 in cooperation with the C20 Society.

A private view of an exhibition of Jagoda Buić, best known for her monumental installations and tapestries, took place at the Richard Saltoun Gallery.

The year ended with a dinner at the sumptuous Savile Club, where guest were welcomed by the klapa group Cesarice, and publication of calendarCroatia 2024 with photographs from the Society’s members.