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Photographic Exhibition

Joy and happiness in Marjan Ciglič's photographs

from 15. Feb to 02. Jun 2024, from 9:00 to 18:00, “S” Gallery, Ljubljana Castle

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Marjan Ciglič, a legendary photographer and one of the most prominent Slovenian photojournalists in the second half of the 20th century. Various events will be held to mark the occasion, but the main one will be an exhibition at the National Museum of Contemporary History, showcasing Ciglič’s life and work. The exhibition at Ljubljana Castle is the first in a series of events and exhibitions. Marjan Ciglič was, among other things, an extraordinary portraitist. His mastery is reflected by the genuine emotions in his photographs, which are a combination of skill, foresight and connection with the person in the photograph. Ciglič knew how to be in the right place at the right time, on both happy and sad occasions. The exhibition will take visitors on a tour of fun and joyful photographs of people in different situations, putting a smile on their faces and reminding them of beautiful moments in their lives.

He first encountered photography in 1938 in the photographic studio of France Jug in Kranj. Under German occupation in World War II, he was forcibly mobilised into the German army and experienced the turmoil of the Eastern Front. After eleven months he managed to get a leave of absence, deserted at the first opportunity and joined the partisan units, where he was also entrusted with military and political functions. He lived to see the end of the war, severely wounded, in the partisan hospital Pavla. Following demobilisation in 1946, he first worked in a photographic studio in Ajdovščina and Vipava, before being transferred to Fotolik in Ljubljana. In 1949 he was arrested and sent to Goli otok for eleven months. After returning home, he was reinstated in his old job at Fotolik, where he remained until 1956, when he joined Foto Potrč for a year. In 1957, at the repeated urging of Dnevnik journalists, he finally decided to join the Dnevnik team, to which he remained loyal until 1997, or as long as he was able to travel and take photographs. Ciglič was thus present at Dnevnik almost from the beginning (1951). He grew with it and was one of the most prominent people in the establishment and operation of Nedeljski dnevnik, which was first published in 1962. His remarkable photographic opus accumulated over forty years and is estimated at around 300,000 photographs. They depict various aspects, from important political events to seemingly simple everyday moments, and are therefore a valuable document for understanding the history and lives of Slovenes. Ciglič received several awards for his work, the most notable of which are the Petek Plaque (1973), and the Tomšič Award (1980). Marjan Ciglič died in 1998. Dnevnik recognised his photographic opus as important national cultural heritage and donated it to the National Museum of Contemporary History in 2001, when the newspaper celebrated its 50th anniversary.

Curator: Monika Močnik, Museum counsellor


The exhibition has been prepared in cooperation with:


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Free admission