Gacka park of croatian memory

In the centre of Otočac there is the Church of the Holy Trinity, the rectory and a smaller green surface – Gacka Park of Croatian Memory.

For arrangement of the church surroundings the Designers anticipated placement of stone cubes in order to decompound the space. On the cubes they shaped important persons, events or cultural facts from Gacka and Otočac region. Chakavian Parliament of Gacka region suggested giving sculptor content to those stone blocks by making each block one of the glagolitic letters. Following that thought, 30 sculptures were created, which tells a story in stone, from the beginning of the 9th century, ending with the 21st century.

A well know sculptor from Pula, Šime Vidulin, who was given complete freedom when choosing the artists,  set a goal to make the colonies international, and to bring new (other) artists every year.

The sculpting colony took place at the end of July 2010 when first eight blocks were done. Respecting the set goal, Vidulin brought academic sculptors from abroad: Janez Pirnat from Ljubljana, Gabriele Gotolli from Verona and Toni Marić from Mostar. Apart from him, the domestic forces were represented by academic sculptors Mate Čvrljak from Labin and Sandra Nejašmić from Postira on the island of Brač, as well as his sculptors of confidence, Janko Mošnja from Pula and Marčelo Starčić from Kanfanar. Đildo Bonaca from Pula helped with the engraving of texts. Eight glagolitic letters (a, b, v, g, d, e, ž) and the following characters were engraved in the first eight motives:

-    The Duke Borna (-821) – the Duke of Gacka people
-    The Baška Tablet (1100) – the oldest monument written in Croatian and the first mention of Otočac
-    Konstantin Porfirogenet (ruled between 945 and 959) -  the first one to write down the names of Gacka, Lika and Krbava
-    Dujam II of Krk (1279 - 1317) – given Gacka as estate
-    Borgo Illirico 6 and 5 (1387 and 1379) – glagolitic manuscript books from Dabar
-    Pope Pius II (ruled between 1458 and 1464) – the founder of Otočac diocese
-    Žikmund Frankopan (1434 – 1465) – the last Frankopan to rule over Otočac and Gacka, Otočac declared city for the first time

The sculpting colony “Gacka 2011” was held in August 2011. Nine domestic and foreign artists participated in this colony. Eight new motives were made and eight glagolitic letters (b, z, ї, i, j, k, l, m) written. Apart from 5 domestic authors, this colony boasts the participance of Korbinian Karl Huber from Germany, George Dan Istrate from Romania, Carlos Roberto and Monge Sanchez from Mexico, as well as Gabriele Gottoli from Italy, artist already well know in Otočac. Apart from Vidulina, the following domestic sculptors showed their skills: Ivan Briski from Zagreb, Janko Mošnja and Đildo Bonaca from Pula, and Marčelo Starčić from Kanfanar.

The colony covers the time period between 15th and early 19th century. Its place was there found by:

-    templar Bernardus (1245) - preceptor of that order in Gacka
-    “Dabarski brevijar” (1486) – glagolitic manuscript books from Dabar
-    “Kolunićev zbornik” (1486) – glagolitic manuscript books from Otočac
-    “Urban z Otočca” (1507) – clergyman and printer from Senj
-    veduta of Otočac through two-century Otočac captaincy
-    battle near Jurjeve Stijene with soldiers earl Petrar Zrinski and marquis Fran Krsto Frankopan
-     Ivan Dominik Vukasović (1728 - 1799) -  Senj and Zagreb clergyman
-    Otočaner – a soldier of the glorious, century-and-a-half old Otočac regiment.

The sculpting colony “Gacka 2012” was held in August 2012. Eight sculptors, including one woman, process historical personalities from Gacka from the first half of the 19th to almost half of the 20th century. Its place in the cube was found by:

-    Fran Krsto Frankopan (1643 – 1671) – a Croatian nobleman
-    general Nikola Maštrović
-    Nikola Mašić (1852. – 1902) – a painter
-    Stjepan Sarkotić von Lovćen (1858. – 1939) - a general
-    academic Vladimir Varićak, PhD (1865 – 1942)
-    Juci Kellerman (1921 – 1993) -  birth name Julka Amić, the most famous actress from Otočac
-    Alfons Dalma (1919 – 1999) - birth name Stjepan Tomičić, a journalist
-    Karlo Mirth (1917 – 2013) – a writer and a publicist

This colony was also of international character; four artists were from abroad: Carlos Roberto Monge from Mexico, Saša Stanišić from Montenegro, Amancio Gonzales Andres from Spain and Gabriele Gottoli from Italy. The domestic sculptors who participated were: Ljubo de Karina from Brseč in Istria, Janko Mošnja from Pula, Marčelo Starčić from Kanfanar in Istria and Jasna Šimunović from Zagreb.

Just as all colonies within the Gacka Park of Croatian Memory, “Gacka 2013” was also of international character. Chakavian Parliament of Gacka invited and hosted Vincent di Vicenza from Canada, Nikolay Borisovich Burtasenkov from Russia, Carlos Monge Gonzales from Mexico and Gabriele Gottolli from Italy. The domestic sculptors who participated were: Ivan Briski from Zagreb, Janko Mošnja from Pula and Marčelo Starčić from Kanfanar (Istria), as well as Šime Vidulin. The fial colony comprised the period between second half of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century. The following characters were carved:

-    Josip Barković (1918 – 2011) – Croatian writer, born in Gacka
-    Zlatko Šimunović (1936 - 1995) – a famous Croatian painter, born in Otočac
-    Aurel Kostelić, PhD (1933) - professor at Faculty of Mechanical Engineering in Zagreb, born in Otočac
-    Slavica Maras-Mikulandra – an actress and a poet
-    emblem of the 133rd  brigade of the Croatian National Guard in Gacka
-    Egon Matijević – a world-know chemist  
-    coat of arms of the town of Otočac