The force behind Papergirl Zagreb, Ivana Rezek, gives us a tour of her city’s cultural spots.


There a quite a few interesting places in Zagreb, Croatia, that would be worth visiting, if you ever find yourself here – these are some of my recommendations.

Museum of Broken Relationships

The idea for the museum was conceived by Olinka Vištica and Dražen Grubišić – recognizing that most of our life events are marked with rituals and ceremonies, but that such a ritual is misssing when it comes to ending a relationship. They asked people to share their break-up stories and donate an ‘artefact’ of the ended relationship. The idea was a huge success – the museum has amassed a vast collection of stories and objects, toured the world with the travelling show, and won the Kenneth Hudson Award for the most innovative museum in Europe. The objects on display vary from teddy-bears to axes, from wedding dresses to shattered mirrors. The stories behind them and the break-ups are often complex, moving, or even shocking – this exhibition leaves nobody indifferent.

Within the museum there is a charming coffee-shop where you can relax after seeing the show, and a gift-shop with unusual and funny souvenirs.


Situated in a former factory, Lauba – People and Art House, exhibits the works of the younger and middle generation Croatian artists, and also serves as a laboratory for art experiments and a place of cultural innovation. This is the best place to get acquainted with the current Croatian art scene. The non-permanent exhibition changes monthly, featuring a large number of artworks, and is accompanied by workshops, lectures, artist talks and film screenings. It is also possible to watch the artists as they create their works or set up their exhibitions.

Lauba is open from 3-11 PM, and the coffee-shop at the entrance is a cool place for relaxing before or after visiting the show.


Yet another former factory, squatted a couple of years ago and turned into a meeting place for people of various interests. Within Medika, there are two galleries – the Grey gallery dedicated to graffiti, underground and street art, and Jogurt, which shows the works of young contemporary artists. Medika also hosts several festivals throughout the year (for example, Vox Feminae – Ladyfest Zagreb), as well as numerous music gigs of various genres, from dubsteb, reggae, and blues, to heavy metal. There is a very well-equipped library as well as a weekly flea-market, improvised cinema and studio space, garden in which a group of enthusiasts is growing vegetables, a space for multimedia experiments, and numerous workshops in which you can learn everything from computer science to circus skills.


A coffee-shop for book lovers, near the centre of the town, with a great variety of local and international newspapers, magazines, and comic books. On an almost daily basis there are book-related events – book club, discussions, quizzes, talks with guest writers from Croatia and abroad, creative writing workshops. There is also a weekly French book club, French Wednesday. In the evenings you can enjoy acoustic sets by indie bands.


What makes this coffee-shop special is not just its lively and energetic interior, but also the fact that this place is dedicated to promoting fair-trade. It serves exclusively fair-trade coffee, and in their shop you can find hand-crafted objects and Bead by Bead jewellery from Africa. In the evenings there is live music – usually indie, jazz, or folk music by local bands, and stand-up comedy shows. Muzungu also gives local artists a chance to show their work on the walls, and organises charity/humanitarian events.


Greta is a recently opened gallery on the main street in Zagreb. It has already become very popular, due to their weekly rotation of exhibitions, interesting choice of artists and artworks, and openness to experimental art, installations and performances. This is the place where you can see the more edgy and thought-provoking works and meet a lot of interesting people. It is a very welcoming and fun place, and exhibition openings at Greta usually turn into parties that last until late into the night.

Studentski Centar

A place where you’re guaranteed to find a lot of interesting things is definitely Studentski Centar (Student Centre). The main building contains a students cafeteria/restaurant, a cinema, and a large venue where several annual festivals (arts, crafts, photography, music, and film festivals), exhibitions, and many music gigs take place. In the surrounding buildings you can find a gallery which shows young and contemporary Croatian artists, a theatre, and a coffee-shop. This is the place where you can get free dance lessons, attend photography and art workshops or participate in an art project yourself, listen to an interesting lecture, watch an art film, or simply attend a party in the evening.

Photo from last year’s Organ Vida photography festival

There is still time to take part in Papergirl Zagreb – the deadline is 1 June. Take a look at their blog to find out how to get involved.


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