17 Jan 2024

Memory Topos. The Arts in Bulgaria in the Twentieth Century and Bulgarian Cultural Heritage Presented in Virtual Digital Spaces from Different Eras

Work Package 3.1. of the Development and Recognition of Bulgarian Studies Abroad National Scientific Programme (NSP Bulgarian Studies) with the tasks: Memory Topos. The arts in Bulgaria in the twentieth century with coordinator Prof. Joanna Spassova-Dikova, PhD, and a team from the Institute of Art Studies: Prof. Andronika Martonova, PhD, Assoc. Prof. Deyan Statulov, PhD; and Bulgarian Cultural Heritage, Presented in Virtual Digital Spaces from Different Eras with coordinator Principal Assist. Prof. Arch. Dimitrina Popova, PhD, and a team from the IAS: Principal Assist. Prof. Ruslan Stoychev, PhD, arch. Albena Zaharieva.
The main goal of the task is the dissemination and study of Bulgarian culture and arts in the twentieth century at home and abroad. Other goals are related to overcoming negative attitudes and building an attractive image of our country by strengthening interest in a research area focusing mainly on performance and screen arts and architecture. It is envisaged to conduct targeted research and create a network of researchers, including scientists from Bulgaria and abroad, as well as students, doctoral students, and young scientists interested in the scientific achievements in the field of arts in Bulgaria in the twentieth century and their promotion. For this purpose, some of the publications will be in Bulgarian and English. Abstracts and notations will also be in both languages.
The project aims to create three-dimensional digital models of architectural works and urban ensembles that will be a natural environment for the presentation of digital art objects from the era. The selection of architectural examples is guided mainly by the criterion to reconstruct objects or ensembles that no longer exist or it is impossible to access them for their study. Digital reconstructions are the results of targeted research by the participants in the project, which is open enough to realize a partnership between scientists from the Institute of Art Studies with other institutes of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, such as in the field of ethnology, cultural studies, and archaeology.
For selected examples (from 1 to 3 pieces) of architectural samples from different periods through the portal of the NSP “Bulgarian Studies”, free access is provided for studying in virtual reality both the architecture itself and art objects that are placed in their original architectural environment. An example list of reconstructed objects is grouped as follows:

  • Thracian architecture in Bulgarian lands (a possible example of virtual reconstruction is the town of Seuthopolis under the waters of the Koprinka dam)
  • Roman-era architecture in Bulgarian lands (example are Roman villas around Serdica, now partially under panel blocks in Sofia)
  • Architecture of the Middle Ages in Bulgarian lands (an example is the Krakra Fortress)
  • 19th-century architecture in Bulgarian lands (possible examples are 19th-century houses photographed and stored in the Architecture Archive of the Institute of Art Studies )

20th century architecture in Bulgaria (an example of potential virtual buildings from the socialist era, part of the collective memory of a generation of Bulgarians, is an international pioneer camp in the village of Kranevo)

1. A Call for specialization of young foreign scholars of Bulgarian studies 
2. A Call to support young scholars in publishing their first monograph on a Bulgarian studies problematic  
3. A Call for a short term visit of a foreign Bulgarian studies scholar
4. Invitation for a short term visit of a foreign Bulgarian studies scholar

The application documents for these calls as well as the application requirements could be found in the links above.