Cultural heritage

Cekin Mansion



Cekinov grad

Celovška cesta 23 SI-1000, Ljubljana

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In the mid-18th century, when Lamberg Castle was erected by Count Leopold Karl Lamberg, the mansion stood in a Ljubljana suburb. The architect Johann Georg Schmidt built the mansion in 1725–1752 without high ambitions, as it was designed merely for dancing parties. Its later name Cekin (meaning coin in Slovene) derives from a deformation of a family name Szögeny, who was later an owner. The mansion had several eminent residents: Italian viceroy Eugen Beauharnais in 1813, the poet France Prešeren was a domestic teacher in 1818–1819, and family Kozler as last owners before the nationalisation after the Second World War.

The two-storey late Baroque mansion has a central projection and behind it an entrance hall on the ground floor and the Knights’ Hall on the first floor, which used to be a dancing hall. The Knights’ Hall has Baroque paintings on walls and a ceiling in Illusionistic style and two decorative stoves. The main staircase is at its backside. It is declared a cultural monument of state importance.

Mansion as a museum

The building was transformed into a museum by the plans of Edo Mihevc in 1952, who inserted a mezzanine above the ground floor. In the same year the Museum of National Liberation moved in. In 1992 the mansion was rearranged again by architect Jurij Kobe (ATELIERarhitekti), when the attic was converted into a warehouse, and an elevator out of steel and glass was added at the backside. The institution has expanded its scope and mission and renamed itself the National Museum of Contemporary History. Today a renovated Knights’ Hall serves as a lecture room.