The regional platform Inappropriate Monuments was created to establish a framework for the long-term collaboration of organisations from the EU and the Western Balkans dealing with the revalorisation and protection of their anti-fascist heritage and monument heritage connected with the Peoples’ Liberation Struggle (NOB). Members of the platform include: Group of architects, Belgrade, The History Museum of Bosnia and Hercegovina, Sarajevo, Modern Gallery (MG+MSUM), Ljubljana and Social Fringe: interesting untold stories (SF:ius), Zagreb.
With the collapse of Yugoslavia the interest in this heritage practically disappeared and the status of the monuments became the subject of controversy and a target of revisionism. Protection is inadequate; there are no clearly developed criteria for their restoration or strategies for revalorisation. Many of the monuments are partially or permanently destroyed, and others are neglected and left to ruin. Research made in the successor countries are not integrated and difficult to access – there has never been a complete register of the monuments. Initiatives aimed at the protection of NOB monuments have, until now, mainly emerged outside of official channels, for example under the initiative of individuals. These individuals then face a number of difficulties including their own shortcomings and the lack of interest from legislators in supporting them.
The goals of the platform are to connect institutions and independent organisations to strengthen their capacity and distribute the results of research projects in order to advocate for a regulated international strategy regarding anti-fascist heritage. Through activities carried out by the platform including: research and mapping heritage monuments, interviewing people and representatives of the institutions responsible for their erection and maintenance, holding workshops for students, conferences for experts and exhibitions and art conferences, the platform will examine the economic, political and ideological conditions surrounding the emergence of monuments, monument complexes and memorial complexes. It will also examine their contemporary reception and the conditions under which this occurs. Considering the growing interest and fetishisation of NOB monuments in western countries, and socialist heritage in general, the platform is seeking possible models of revitalisation and methods of management. Through a comparative analysis of the situation in former Yugoslavia, the platform aims to draw parallels between the transitional periods of the members of the former state and the treatment of heritage monuments connected to NOB and the anti-fascist struggle, thereby showing that these processes can only be explained through interactive research.
The web-portal, inapropriatemonuments.org is conceived as an on-line database for the activities of the platform and its members and as a virtual archive of documents and photographs.