The exhibition dedicated to Milan Marjanović (Kastav (Castua) 1879 – Zagreb 1955), one of the most interesting protagonists in the history of the Croatian Littoral, was created as a result of many years of research by Ervin Dubrović, director of the City Museum of Rijeka. It’s a pity that we don’t know enough about Marjanović. He was a person of extraordinary energy and passion – a journalist, politician, literary critic and writer.
As a member of the progressive Croatian youth, he fought against the Hungarians and Austria-Hungary, for the independence of Croatia, and later he saw the solution to Croatia’s future in the uniting of South Slavic peoples. Prior to World War I, he served in London as a member of the Yugoslav Committee, as well as the representative of the Committee in the United States and South America. At the outbreak of the war, he was put under house arrest in Kastav, and was imprisoned for his ideas in Ljubljana and Zagreb. During World War II he was interned to Italy.
He was engaged in literary writing, which led him to Greenwich Village, where he became the only performed Croatian playwright writer. In parallel, he acted as a literary critic. The Rijeka bookstore Trbojević published his Literary News. After WW2, he ran the Film Laboratory of the Andrija Štampar School of Public Health in Zagreb. In the fifties, he became president of the council of the Adriatic Institute JAZU (Yugoslav Academy of Science and Art) in Zagreb, and an academician. His writing dealt with many topics, including contemporary economic as well as historical studies on Croatian-Italian relations. He regularly maintained contacts with intellectuals of the litoral region such as Ante Dukić, Drago Gervais, Rikard Katalinić Jeretov, Ante Mandić, Viktor Car Emin, and was a contributor to the literary magazine Riječka revija.
The Kastav exhibition dedicated to Marjanović is organized after the recent one of Rijeka from which it differs in some aspects. It is accompanied by a catalogue about Marjanović, observing him primarily within his native context. At the same time, the edition of the “Kastav Collection of Articles” dedicated to Marjanović is being published, prepared by Ervin Dubrović. It brings a series of Marjanović’s articles on Kastav and Istria, on local writers (Viktor Car Emin, Mate Dukić, Rikard Katalinić Jeretov, Vladimir Nazor, Janko Polić Kamov), and on politicians (Erazmo Barčić, Frano Supilo). Marjanović’s autobiographical notes and his correspondence with local writers are added. At the end of the Collection, a reprint of his work “Action for the expulsion of Italians from our region in 1920” is also added, and the edition closes with a biographical chronology.
The exhibition is held in Kastav, in the church of St. Trinity and in the City Hall.