December 2020

Slovenia’s referendum of independence

Slovenia’s referendum of independence: a photo by Joco Žnidaršič

On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the referendum on Slovenia’s independence, the National Museum of Contemporary History received an exceptional gift. The renowned photo reporter ¬¬¬ Joco Žnidaršič — the first Slovenian photographer to win a Prešeren Fund Award and the World Press Photo Award — donated part of his photographic opus to the museum.

The colour photograph presented here was taken by Joco Žnidaršič during the celebration of the unofficial results of the plebiscite on Sunday, December 23, 1990. The picture was taken over the three bridges of the Ljubljanica river; it features the three colours of the Slovenian flag which are represented by the winter jackets of the celebrants, and is illuminated by three lights: the flaming torches in the foreground, the Christmas lights, and the fireworks erupting from Ljubljana’s Castle Hill in the background. A glorious celebration of a glorious plebiscite.