Riko Debenjak Gallery

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Contact info
Galerija Rika Debenjaka
Pionirska 6, SI-5213 Kanal ob Soči
Phone386 (0) 51 636 930
Managed byProsvetno društvo Soča Kanal
Milica Zimic
Phone386 (0) 51 636 930
TIC Kanal
Phone386 (0) 5 398 1214

Placed in the small picturesque city of Kanal on the Soča River, Riko Debenjak Gallery was established in 1977 when the eminent Slovene painter and graphic artist Riko Debenjak (1908–1987) donated his prints to his home town. In collaboration with the Municipality of Kanal the gallery is run by Prosvetno društvo Soča Kanal with the president Milica Zimic at the head.


The gallery is situated in a renovated defence tower and three houses that are all connected forming the old city wall. The Kolar's house, the Gothic house and since February 2012 the memorial room of Riko Debenjak was opened in Fišč's house where many of Riko Debenjak's artworks, personal belongings, and archives are on display. The exhibition space is therefore very branched and consists of three floors measuring approximately 80 sq. metres each.


The gallery hosts about fourteen exhibitions annually, including an exhibition of the Northern Primorska Fine Artists Association, an exhibition of the art section of the University of the Third Age UNITRI Nova Gorica, an exhibition of the Club of Ceramicists Kanal and an exhibition by pupils of the elementary school in Kanal. Occasionally the exhibition catalogues and brochures are published by Prosvetno društvo Soča Kanal which also organises an annual international ex-tempore in collaboration with Centro Culturale Tullio Cralli from Gorizia, Italy, and local artists from Kanal, Nova Gorica, Goriška Brda, Tržič, Gorizia, and the Gorizia Hills. Annually the gallery hosts a photographic exhibition on mountaineering as well. In March 2010 the exhibition by Friulian climbers Nives Meroi and Roman Benet was the fifteenth, while Davo Karničar presented Life with Mountains featuring his photographs from all over the world in 2012.

The gallery space is also a venue for the festival Kogoj’s Days. During Kogoj’s Days 2004 Janez Bernik presented his work, in 2006 Berko's digital prints were presented and Riko Debenjak's oil paintings were exhibited in 2012.

Thematic group exhibitions

Monika Ivančič Fajfar has curated several thematic group exhibitions in the Riko Debenjak Gallery, such as Views of the Soča River Valley – a Different Perspective (2006) where Ana Grobler, Damijan Kracina, Matic Leban, and others referred to the local context using different media. A year later, in November 2007, the international exhibition War and Peace: Memories and Monuments was organised on the 90th anniversary of the end of the Battles of the Isonzo. The exhibition aimed to symbolically link the people who were on different sides during the war or later. In this spirit the exhibition was later on display in Bovec and Gorizia as well.

Riko Debenjak Gallery hosted a series of annual exhibitions It's a Woman's World of Art curated by Monika Ivančič Fajfar from 2007 to 2011. The research and presentation of current production of Slovene female artists who create in the field of traditional art media consisted of four exhibitions, each year featuring a different discipline: painting (2007), sculpture (2009), graphics (2010), photography (2010). Among the 20 artists of the younger generation there were Tina Dobrajc, Polona Demšar, Vesna Drnovšek, and Vanja Bučan.

See also

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