Živa

The Živa Award for the Best Slavic Museum and for the Best Heritage Site in Slavic countries aims at identifying, encouraging, rewarding and promoting experiments, projects, practices in the museum sector within the specific cultural and geographical framework of the European countries of Slavic culture recognizing the peculiarities and specific values of the Slavic world with its story, its traditions, its heritage, its common and sometimes contradictory roots as well as its problems.

The Živa is alive trough:
“It is an Award which at the same time collect interesting experiences and make possible to share them at the transnational level. It encourages competition in order to increase the number of museums which can do better more than simply to be the best ones and it is based on the idea that knowledge and sharing of experiences is essential for determining a more influential role of museums in our societies.”
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THE ANNUAL PROCEDURE

There is an amazing, and growing number of Slavic museums and heritage sites which extend their role in society with a significant local or national impact. That is admirable in itself, but these experiences need to be shared, seen and acknowledged. And the Živa Award – with all its applicants – is a major entrance point for the FSK stakeholders, colleagues and audiences.

The Award serves as a platform for sharing and promoting – in Slavic countries as well as in the broader group of European countries. Both main awards (The Živa Award for the Best Slavic Museum and the Živa Award for the Best Slavic Heritage Site) are dedicated to the promotion of the protection, preservation, education and communication of museum collections, and of heritage sites, their diversity in type, size and contents as well as their social role by highlighting their innovative and creative approaches, accessibility to the public and openness, their impact on societies, and their contribution to the development of museological principles and ideas.

There is an amazing, and growing number of Slavic museums and heritage sites which extend their role in society with a significant local or national impact. That is admirable in itself, but these experiences need to be shared, seen and acknowledged. And the Živa Award – with all its applicants – is a major entrance point for the FSK stakeholders, colleagues and audiences.

The Award serves as a platform for sharing and promoting – in Slavic countries as well as in the broader group of European countries. Both main awards (The Živa Award for the Best Slavic Museum and the Živa Award for the Best Slavic Heritage Site) are dedicated to the promotion of the protection, preservation, education and communication of museum collections, and of heritage sites, their diversity in type, size and contents as well as their social role by highlighting their innovative and creative approaches, accessibility to the public and openness, their impact on societies, and their contribution to the development of museological principles and ideas.

  • The Živa Award is open for the candidates from the following countires: Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Croatia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Russian Federation, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine.
  • Applications are free of any financial obligations.
  • Applications are welcomed from all types of museums: historical, natural-historical, technical, industrial museums or science centers, ethnographic, architecture, literary, music, art, and others. The museums can be local, regional, national or federal. Private ones are also welcome.
  • Applications are welcomed from all types of heritage sites: historical buildings and structures, monuments, architectural works, archaeological sites, cultural and natural museum reserves, revitalized, reconstructed industrial buildings and areas used for museum and cultural purposes, combined works of man and nature such as gardens and parks – heritage sites of exceptional historical, artistic, scientific ethnological and anthropological value.
  • To share the ideas and results with colleagues from Slavic countries and abroad.
  • To have a platform to speak up and to exchange at the Award ceremony.
  • To get promoted in the Živa catalogue, website, video and all FSK press-releases all year long.
  • To get a wider visibility among European institutions.
  • To gain an excellent PR to the stakeholders.

The selection procedure starts every autumn when an international call is published and the information on it is widely disseminated. With the assistance of the international jury the promotion and candidacies submissions take place until the end of the year. The first half of the year is dedicated to the evaluation and decisions. The judges pay visists to the museum candidates upon their complete applications. In May or the beginning of June the judges get together, review their reports, exchange their expert evaluations and decide on the award and special recognitions winners. The summer is dedicated to the organization of the Živa Award ceremony that is gradually turning into a professional get-together with the exchange of experiences.

The Živa Award cycle is concluded by the award ceremony in September. In the six years of its existence the event evolved into a three-day long professional gathering featuring experts from various fields that are often complementary to the museology. A specific characteristic, now already a common practice is the presentation of the previous winner and its experiences over the year. The cycle might be fixed but the award ceremony moves to a different location every year. This brings about a great opportunity to get much better acquainted with the environments we work with.

THE JURY

Member countries of the Forum of Slavic Cultures appoint judges from each country. The European Museum Academy collaborates and provides three or four judges from its pool of experts. The team of judges consists of 13 to 14 members. Jury members come from different backgrounds such as museum directors, cultural management consultants, curators, museum personnel working in public relations and marketing experts.

Judges on the Tour

The Jury visits all participating and nominated museums in situ, which is a rare and unique practice that enriches both, the museums and the Živa judges. The pricelessness of individual experiences is added to their professional evaluations at which they are looking for the outstanding and creative use of collections, combined with an innovative interpretative approach.

Jury Impressions

ŽIVA SCULPTURE

The author of the unique art sculpture is Ljubica Ratkajec Kočica, the Slovenian fine artist as well as glass and ceramic designer from Rogaška Slatina. Her works, which she successfully presented at individual and group exhibitions, were awarded with numerous national and international awards.

Her body of work is distinguished by innovativeness and exceptional sensitivity for the life of details in the overall form composition of art products. She devotes an important part of her creative process to the female form, which she displays with a stylized head and a simple silhouette, cleverly supplemented by individual symbols and artistic elements.

With her remarkable feeling Ljubica Ratkajec Kočica has brought the ceramic sculptures to outstanding creative achievements, where the solid structure of the ceramic forms passes over to the field of creating sculptures with a precise graphic treatment of the surface. Each of her unique masterpieces tells a story of its own and ensures a unique aesthetic experience.

WINNERS & SPECIAL RECOGNITION RECIPIENTS

ŽIVA AWARD WINNERS

BEST SLAVIC MUSEUMS

All winners for the Best Slavic Museum over the past years
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BEST HERITAGE SITES

All winners for the Best Heritage Site over the past years
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Special recognitions recipients

ŽIVA AWARD NOMINEES

ŽIVA PUBLICATIONS

CEREMONIES & CONFERENCES

HIGHLIGHTS

The Živa family

ŽIVA has connected 139 museum candidates from 13 Slavic countries in 7 years.

The Živa Award ceremony
and conference hosts

The Živa Award annual ceremony and conference have so far been hosted in Skopje/North Macedonia, St. Petersburg/Russian Federation, Zadar/Croatia, Bled/Slovenia, Prague/Czech Republic and Bar/Montenegro.

Živa after Živa

Živa after Živa event was part of the special FSK programme at the VIII International Cultural Forum in St. Petersburg, organised in cooperation with the State Museum of Political History of Russia, and included the award ceremony for the winners of the 2019 award.

NEWS

Živa Award Judges Back on the Road

With epidemiological situation in most Slavic countries improving and control measures relaxing the judges for the Živa Award are ready to visit the nominated museums in person. Should that not be possible for all of the museums the visit and evaluation will take place remotely. The 7th Živa Award ceremony for the Best Slavic Museum and Heritage Site will take place in September 2021.

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Judges for Živa Award 2020 Meet Online

Instead of meeting in Belgrade (Serbia) in person, our judges for Živa Award 2020 held their regular annual meeting online. They shared their experiences during the pandemic in their respective countries, reported on the responses of Živa Award candidates and adopted the decision to move the opening ceremony to autumn 202

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STORY

The Slavic goddess Živa (also Żiwia, Siva, Sieba or Razivia) represents a principle of life, longevity, youthfulness, beauty, mildness, vitality and fertility. These are the attributes that should describe Slavic heritage as well.

The Živa Award has been established in 2012 on the initiative of an expert project group from the member countries of the Forum of Slavic Cultures.

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