Art News

Bosnia Turns Marshal Tito Nuclear Bunker into Art Gallery

KONJIC (AP).- It was built to withstand nuclear war, a secret bunker to shelter communist Yugoslavia’s strongman and his inside circle. Decades later, the massive underground complex is about to be reborn as one of the world’s quirkiest art galleries. A Kalashnikov-toting soldier still guards the entrance of Josip Broz Tito’s subterranean fortress — a fitting if anachronistic symbol of the secrecy that once surrounded the structure. Outside of Marshal Tito and his closest confidants, its existence was known only to four generals and the handful of soldiers guarding it on completion in 1979 until Bosnia broke away from Yugoslavia in 1992 and its new army took over. Once the gallery opens a year from now, the soldier will be gone. The brainchild of a group of Sarajevo artists, it is to stage a Biennale of Contemporary Art starting next year