Visit of media representatives from France at invitation of TO Serbia September 2019
Friday. Mid-September. A beautiful, not too warm day, and my colleagues and I are expecting a group of high-profile magazine journalists from France. This group of journalists is for the first time in Serbia, and therefore in our city, and they are of the greatest interest in the cultural offer of the city, and we are so glad that we know how much the city has to offer.
Our schedule is dense, they can only spend one day in Novi Sad, but we are all in a great mood and time is at our side.
The arrival of journalists begins with a visit to the “City Princess” – Petrovaradin Fortress, where they liked everything: “gradic”, stairs leading to the upper plateau of the fortress, a view of the whole Novi Sad, a clock as a symbol of the fort, restaurants, ateliers, a display in the City Museum.
After a short break, we walked to the Museum of Vojvodina. The Museum liked them so much that we “broke through” the term that was intended for the visit to the Museum, and at that moment we made the decision to change the route of the city center a little.
We all walked from the museum down Danube Street to the city center, and during this walk, there was a mini interview with one of the journalists, and the questions mostly related to personal / private moments that I like to spend in my city: – where we like to drink coffee, where we spend our free time, where we like to eat a good cake, how enjoyable life is in Novi Sad.
Then I realized that perhaps they were most interested in feeling the pulse of the city.
We paused often, so that the eye of the lens would be immortalized. And all of a sudden, the focus from the city shifted to me and my colleague. We were a little confused, but with a laugh they quickly explained to us to relax, because one always falls out nicely when one does not try to turn out beautiful. And without a conversation we immediately agreed and were photographed. 😊
So through the conversation we reached the French Institute in Pasiceva. Just as we were about to enter the French Institute, and our colleague had one bold suggestion – stop the traffic for a moment so that everyone would be photographed 😊 , in front of the Tourism Organization of the City of Novi Sad, immortalized once and for all, this authentically warm September afternoon.
The next stop was the Svilara Cultural Center. This revitalized abandoned building, which is one of the most popular Youth Cultural Centers in Novi Sad, quickly won our guests. Suffice it to say that we also “broke” the terms for visiting other cultural institutions. 😊
We ended the day slowly at the Matica Srpska Gallery. Although the proposal to visit the Gallery was to tour the 19th century setting, after the first impressions, the agreement was changed and we toured all the permanent exhibitions – 18th century art, through the 19th century and “came” to the modernist setting (20th century).
Interesting for our guests was the fact that the good relations between France and Serbia after the First World War resulted in a large number of artists from Serbia choosing to study in Paris. The result of this influence of French art on our artists was that the interwar scene, when we talk about art, is almost identical.
Later that evening there was also an exhibition of photographs by the famous French photographer Felix Nadar – A Portrait of a Time.
Coincidence? I would not say so 😊.
The exhibition “One Time Portrait” was organized by the Matica Srpska Gallery, the National Gallery for Photography “Jeu de Paume” from Paris and the French Institute in Serbia. The exhibition is a promotion of photography, as a new medium, and represents the rise of photography to a new level, consisting of 40 photographs.
After the exhibit, our guests wanted to briefly walk through the city center after the exhibit, and perhaps capture another small detail of the city with the last rays of the sun that day, because they were looking for another detail worth remembering … and I’m sure they found it because, according to their reactions, (jargonly speaking), it is clear to me that Novi Sad “completely bought” them. And really, who wouldn’t? 😊
The author: Dunja Knežević