Mid Century Modern Croatian Art Medal Wall Plate

Croatia Mid-Century- Slovenia Vace Wall Art Zagrebfest

Mid- Century -Modern- Croatian- Art- Medal- Wall- Plate

This hand enameled wall hanging plate was made in Croatia in the 1960's by the artisans of Dekor in Zagreb, the capital city. The scene is intriguing, with outline drawings in black against earthy rusts, reds and golds. The man standing on the right holds a bucket, while the seated woman is playing a reed instrument. Pop music, called schlager, became big in Croatia in the 1950's and the first annual Zagreb Festival of Music was in 1953--and is still going strong as the Zagrebfest. The couple pictured on this plate may be performers in the festival. 

The words on the diamond shaped black and silver foil label translate to: "DEKOR"--the brand name--"Roast enamel"--we'd say baked-on enamel--and "Souvenir." The typed paper label beneath was more difficult for us to translate, so we wrote to a wonderful man named Tomislav in Croatia, who contributed the Croatian section of the website eudict.com. He translated the label as: "A person playing a syrinx {a musical instrument like a pan flute} and a situla from Vače {a situla is a decorated small metal bucket with a handle; Vače is a town in Slovenia}.** We've seen several plates by DEKOR and they all have had "Zagreb" on the label, which this one does not have. Perhaps this plate was not meant to be exported but was a souvenir of the festival.

Heavy for its size, the plate weighs just under 2 pounds. It measures about 10 3/4 inches square and 1 inch in height with corners that curve upward. There is a molded loop in the metal on the upper back with a very flimsy existing wire.  It's a fascinating piece of art to stand or hang and a dimensional alternative to a print or painting. 

Yugoslavian- DEKOR- Enameled -Wall -Plaque- Close- up- of- tags- and -hanger-

© Linda Henrich

**This is a link to a fascinating column about Vače. Scroll down---there's info about the situla with photos


Photos By Wayne Henrich

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