This exhibition marks the 150th anniversary of the birth of Dr Franjo Kresnik, a citizen of Europe, a man above borders, one of the greatest experts of Cremona lutherie (violin making). In his honour, Stradivarius and Guarneri violins are on display.
As part of the introductory programme to the exhibition Borders – Between Order and Chaos, the 150th anniversary of the birth of Dr Franjo Kresnik, one of the greatest experts of the day in Cremona lutherie and a master craftsman in the building of string instruments, is marked. For more than 40 years Kresnik dedicated himself to the study of string instruments, particularly those created in the workshops of Stradivari and Guarneri. In his honour, instruments of these two masters of lutherie are on display in the Maritime and History Museum of the Croatian Littoral Rijeka from 6thDecember 2019 until 8th March 2020.
Kresnik’s passion, the study of Italian, especially classical Cremona violins, and later the manufacture in his own workshop, went beyond the borders that politics had drawn over the region in which he lived. He was a key person in the establishment of the International School of Violin Making in Cremona and they called him an associate director of the school.
The musical heritage and Kresnik’s work are viewed in the context of the economic, political and social characteristics of the time. Belgrade’s Politika and Cremona’s Il Regime Fascista wrote about his work in the same positive tone. At the same time, he was a member of the Academy – the Society of Croatian Intellectuals and a representative of the Italian Association of Craftsmen, he treated D’Annunzio’s Arditi troops and volunteered in the Banovina hospital in Sušak. Contemporaries referred to him as a native of Vienna, who settled in Yugoslavia, but who was an Italian at heart. Franjo Kresnik was a citizen of Europe who with his actions went beyond political borders.
The team that created the exhibition consists of Tamara Mataija (HR), Fausto Cacciatori (IT) and Tea Perinčić (HR), and the exhibition’s designers are Sanjin Kunić (HR) and Nikolina Radić Štivić (HR).
As part of the exhibition, two concerts using Kresnik’s violins are being held in the Marble Hall of the Museum: on 24thJanuary 2020 the young violinists from Rijeka Matej Mijalić (HR) and Ivan Graziani (HR) perform with piano accompaniment from Jelena Barbarić Mijalić (HR), whilst the renowned German violinist Gernot Süßmuth (DE) performs on 22nd February 2020. On 14th February in the Croatian National Theatre Ivan pl. Zajc the Italian violinist Giuliano Carmignola (IT) holds a concert on a Stradivarius violin, accompanied by the famous Venice Baroque Orchestra (IT).