The founder of the Museum (together with the co–founder ZEPTERINVEST) and its owner, Mrs. Madlena Zepter, a citizen of Belgrade and the world, and the world in Belgrade, presented her native city with another cultural institution. From the very beginning, because of its importance and high quality it has become a meeting place for all lovers of art from the town, the entire region and also from abroad. By the decision of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Serbia this establishment has been registered as the first private art museum in Serbia – the ZEPTER MUSEUM.
It was opened on July 1, 2010 in that magnificent building in the historic centre of Belgrade and the vicinity of the most precious cultural and educational institutions (the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, the Faculties of Philosophy, Philology, Fine Arts …) at 42, Kneza Mihaila Street.
The core activity of the ZEPTER MUSEUM is to collect systematically, protect, study, exhibit and publish works of art. It is intended to gather together in one place the works and artists who can visualize the complex art scene in Serbia in the second half of the 20th century and the beginning of the new millennium.
One could, perhaps, say that the main feature of the Zepter Gallery COLLECTION is the continuity, in the sense of what Stojan Ćelić once named as „right to everything“: „We used to prove ourselves within our own frames of reference. So, with Čelebonović we learned the real splendour of painting, with Lubarda we got to known the limits of ascent, with Gvozdenović what one can zealously undertake in one’s full maturity, with Tabaković how to reach the spaces of the irrational.“ By learning from the best in one’s own surroundings, by seeing artworks at the important exhibitions Belgrade was privileged enough to host, but also by visiting the European and world centres of art, our artists from the 1950s and 1960s broadened their horizons and strengthened their motivation to persevere along their own creative paths. This brought up the personalities who would become the foundations of our modernism and inspire future generations of artists. This approach erased the borderline between the provinces and the leading art centres, and enhanced the maturing of exceptional artistic individuals who left their imprints on their time and on our entire art production from the second half of the twentieth century. The intention of our COLLECTION is to emphasize that. Therefore it also comprises the works by painters and sculptors who had been members of different groups, such as the Zadar Group, the December Group, The Eleven, Mediala. There are also representatives of the most radical developments, such as informel and other aspects of abstract expression, representatives of the new, narrative and poetic figuration, Pop Art and new objectivity, Neue Wilden (New Wild Ones) and transavanguardia, fantastic painting, and almost all other tendencies and developments from the turn of the century and the new millennium, including certain examples of conceptual and postconceptual art. The COLLECTION also presents, among others, many professors from the Faculties of Fine and Applied Arts in Belgrade and the Arts Academy in Novi Sad (the teachers of new generations) and members of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, the most prestigious cultural institution in the country. Naturally, there are also the young ones, those who are yet to enter the history of our, and maybe European art.
In three years of its activity, the ZEPTER MUSEUM has enlarged the number of represented artists from 134 to 164 and the number of artworks from 350 to over 400. Continuing to enrich the COLLECTION the number of artworks by 2020 has grown up to 570 works with a tendency to increase the COLLECTION every year by a certain number of works. All new acquisitions are placed on our website under Artworks. In its meticulous replenishment of the collection, the Museum has paid special attention to the technique of pastel and the works of those artists who are about to leave the Faculty of Fine Arts.
The ZEPTER MUSEUM has all the necessary modern technical equipment and everything else required by any museum activity. The ZEPTER MUSEUM is a living organism and its doors are open to a broad variety of cultural events – chamber music concerts, video presentations, discussions and promotions, lectures, topical meetings and professional talks. In other words, it is our desire that the Museum functions as a cultural centre with events of the highest standard.
Briefly, it is our desire to perform an educational and cultural mission.
Although Gombrich believed that it was difficult, almost impossible to satisfy simultaneously the requirements of a profession and the interests of the public, our ambition is to reconcile these antipodes and to make a contribution with our cultural mission so that art, and particularly the art from our COLLECTION, becomes broadly accepted here and as such presented in the world. If we succeed − and we believe it will happen − the reasons for our existence will have been justified and the goals of our activity fulfilled.