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AUSTRIAN ETHNOGRAPHERS COLLECTING AND RESEARCHING IN ISTRIA AT THE END OF THE 19. CENTURY AND THE BEGINNING OF THE 20. CENTURY - Summary

Veronika Plöckinger, Mattias Beitl

 

Austrian ethnographers (such as Michael Haberlandt, founder of the Austrian Ethnographic Museum in Vienna) started to show interest in Istria at the end of 19th century. The research interest and collector activities focused largely on the so-called "Istrian kitchen" with its open heart and metal dishes, colourful ceramic jugs and plates, and carved wooden benches beside the heart. They did not pay attention to the diverse places of origin of such objects with, and presented them all together, in that way mixing simple semi-urban origin. Most of the items which were bought for the Austrian Ethnographic Museum in Vienna were selected for their aesthetic value: the ethnographers were primarily drawn, for example, by colourful ceramic artefacts from workshops in today's Italy - and also Slovenia- or attractive carved and decorated weathervanes from fishing boats. All of this contributed to a specific but only partial image of Istrian culture.

 

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