The Olympic museum of Sarajevo re-opened on 8 October 2020, almost three decades after being destroyed during the war in Bosnia.
The jewel of local architecture, built as a luxury villa in the early 20th century, honours the memory of the 1984 Sarajevo Winter Olympic Games.
The reopening ceremony of the museum was hosted by Mayor of Sarajevo Abdulah Skaka, who pledged to continue patching up the city’s architecture that still shows war scars, a quarter of a century since the clashes.
The event was also attended by President of the Bosnian Olympic Committee Dr Izet Rado and HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, who is also the patron of “Peace and Sport (P&S),” a neutral and independent organization aimed to promote peace through sport.
A specific area of the museum is dedicated to the Winter EYOF 2019, which saw the two cities united in a common celebration of sport and peace.
“The date of the opening will be forever remembered as the day when we confirmed the values upon which the brightest moments of our Olympic history are built, said Rado. “This history has showed the whole world that we can organise the most important events that celebrate joy, peace, togetherness and tolerance.”
The P&S award is also part of the exhibition’s memorabilia, which includes photos, souvenirs, and some athletes’ equipment, but also works that some artists have devoted to the Sarajevo Winter Olympics, including those of Andy Warhol, Henry Moore, Michelangelo Pistoletto, or James Rosenquist.
Bosnian artist Edin Numankadic, the founder of the museum, managed to preserve a large part of the collections during the conflict by hiding them in the basement of the Zetra Olympic ice rink.
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