UGM in 2020

This year, as we celebrate 100 years of organized artistic activity in Maribor, UGM will exhibit the 100 best works from our collection. The year will also be marked by the return of the international triennial of art and environment.

2020 will begin with the opening of the second part of the retrospective exhibition of the artist Meta Grgurevič in her local exhibition space, which will be accompanied by the exhibition in Künstlerhaus, Halle für Kunst & Medien (KM - Graz, Austria) on January 31. This is the first extensive retrospective exhibition of Meta Grgurevič’s artwork, one of the most exciting artists of the middle generation that explores and constructs kinetic systems and builds them into multidimensional compositions. On February 29, we will also organize free transport between, and a guided tour of, the two exhibitions in cooperation with KM - Graz.

After last year’s guest exhibition of artwork from the UGM Collection at the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Koroška, we will host their collection in the first half of the year. The main event of 2020 will be a comprehensive exhibition of the 100 best artworks or 100 best authors from the UGM Collection. In the second half of the year, we will exhibit works by the sculptor Slavko Tihec, the painters Ivan Grohar, Ivana Kobilca, Zoran Mušič, Zmago Jeraj, Mariborski krog photographers and many others. During the exhibition, we will publish a comprehensive catalogue where all reproductions and descriptions of the best artwork from our collection will be gathered for the first time. We are also organising two exhibitions in UGM Kabinet - a space intended for in-depth discussions on the gallery collection - one will present rarely exhibited authors of Yugoslavia, while in the other we will tell stories based on the documentary materials relating to exhibition activities in Maribor during the previous century.

“Today, the environment is an urgent issue which concerns us all. They were aware of that in our gallery 40 years ago, when in 1980 the visionary triennial of art and ecology was established. After a short break, we will kick-start the 8th edition of the triennial. We intend to build on the tradition of the triennial’s international character but also connect global and local.” (Breda Kolar Sluga) The opening of the event will be in July in the former Maribor textile factory (MTT), where industry once bloomed but which today is sadly considerably run-down, despite its proximity to the city centre. By choosing this location, we wish to draw attention to the developing potential of Melje, where MTT is situated.

UGM Studio will continue with presentations of new artistic productions of Slovenian authors. Solo exhibitions of the work of Karmen Čorak and Andrej Brumen Čop, Boris Beja, Tanja Verlak and Matija Bobičič will be held this year. As part of the international photo based platform, Parallel UGM Studio will also present photographs of the younger generation from around the world. We will carry out a cultural guidelines pilot programme as part of the European project Art and Well-being. Through “prescribed” visitation of the gallery, we hope to promote the beneficial effects of art consumption on our health. The Project Wom@arts will offer comparative research and education to establish a more equitable representation of female authors in culture.

2020 in Maribor art gallery will be bursting with exhibitions and projects of all kinds; however, sadly, we are entering yet another year without the space and conditions we need to operate successfully. “Although we were founded by the Municipality of Maribor, the importance of the gallery exceeds city or regional boundaries. This period of significant economic growth is the right time for state and city decision-makers to come together and deliver on their promises of a decentralization policy. Access to public cultural goods cannot be available only to residents of the capital.” (Breda Kolar Sluga)