The Prime Minister of the Republic of Bulgaria – General Boyko BORISOV,
The Minister of Regional Development and Public Works, Republic of Bulgaria – Rosen PLEVNELIEV
The Minister of Culture, Republic of Bulgaria – Vezhdi RASHIDOV,
The Chairman of the Sofia Municipal Council – Andrey IVANOV,
The Chief Architect of Sofia – M.Ach. Petar DIKOV,
The Chairperson of the Culture, Civil Society and Media Committee, National Assembly, R. of Bulgaria –
The President of the Managing Council, Builgarian National Committee of ICOMOS –
Assoc. Prof. Stefan BELISHKI,
Chairman of the Union of Architects in Bulgaria Managing Board – M.Arch. Spiridon GANEV,
Chairman of the Chamber of Architects in Bulgaria – M.Arch. Petko IOVCHEV,
Chairman of the Union of Bulgarian Artists – Ivaylo MIRCHEV,
Chairman of the Union of Landscape Architects in Bulgaria – Landsc. Arch. Gancho BAKALOV
For saving of the Villa of Architect Georgi Fingov, 38 Shipka Str., Sofia
UPI VIII-14, quarter 554, area “Centara”, zone 'А'
(announced as an architectural and construction cultural heritage site of local significance, State Gazette No. 40/1978)
The first owner and designer of the remarkable building – Georgi Fingov, is an architect of national significance, and his works do not yield in mastership and actuality to a row of models of the European style of Secession. A graduate from Vienna (1893-98), when the ‘Secession’ society was founded there (1897), collaborator of the noted Austrian architects Karl König and Karl Meyreder on designs for the city centre of Vienna, co-founder of the Association ‘Savremenno izkustvo’ (Contemporary Art, 1903) in Bulgaria.
Architect Georgi Fingov has been among the patriarchs of Bulgarian architecture.
He has designed – independently or in teams – most of the striking architectural patterns of the beginning of the 20th century in the country, such as the reconstructed monastery of St. Dimitar in Euxinograd, the Customs in Burgas, most of Prince Ferdinand’s hunting huts, the evangelic church in Plovdiv, the ‘chitalishte’ (public library and theatre) in Svistov, villas for Dimitar Stanchov and General Sava Vuychev in Varna, as well as a great number of emblematic buildings in Sofia – among them the villas for Laos Funk, for Vera Drenkova (nowadays Embassy of the Rep. of Greece), for General Kiril Botjov, for General Hristo Savov, for Avram Chalyovski and Georgi Gubidelnikov; ten central city’s public schools, the Commercial and Industrial Chamber (nowadays CI Bank), the Bank of Sofia (present DSK Bank) and Commercial Bank (present Corporate Commercial Bank AD), the insurance companies of ‘Phoenix’ (nowadays National Employment Agency) and ‘Orel’ (‘Eagle’, present ‘Triaditsa’ District Administration), of ‘Targovski dom’ (Commercial Centre) and many others.
In the former elegant home at 38 Shipka Str., constructed by Fingov for his family needs in 1907, gathered furtherers of the new turn-of-the-century-style in the arts – the most brilliant Bulgarian architects, artists, sculptures, actors and writers. The interior arrangement was a manifesto of their credo. The entrance to the villa was marked by an impressive stylized stone head of a woman by the sculptor Andrey Nikolov – a graduate of Prof. A. Mercier from École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, later member of the Board of Trustees to the International Association of Artists in Rome.
After 1989 Maria Theodorova restituted the villa and bequeathed it in favour of property restoration after her death (1995) distributing each of the three floors to the son of Simeon of Saxe-Couburg-Gotha – Prince Kubrat of Bulgaria, to the president of ‘Bulgaria’ Foundation - Yakov Gerassy, and to the attorney-at-law in the restitution case. Soon after that Th. Theodorov’s inheritress – Nadezhda Th., disputed the contention and sold the acquired property to the building company ‘Bulgarian Construction House’ Ltd.
Alas, no. Already in 2008 in the winter eve a big hole was open in the roof so that the facades’ plasters were driven to deplorable condition; the interiors were plundered.
But the appetites did not stop. In August 2009 quite an ambitious investment intention for superstruction and addition of a new volume in the yard was introduced to ‘Architecture and Town Planning’ Department within Sofia Municipality and announced to public at the ’Sredets’ District Administration at the height of the summer season – as informed engineer Margarita Guteva, the ‘Sredets’ district mayor [interview, NP 24 Hours, 21.8.2009, http://www.imot.bg/pcgi/main.cgi?topmenu=4&leftmenu=1&act=3&f1=2009&f2=08].
The Sofia Municipal Council and the Chief Architect of Sofia
To demand so that the Proposal for change of the building development plan and the working spatial-development plan for the lot with the Villa Fingov at 38 Shipka Str. introduced to the ‘Architecture and Town Planning’ Department will respect the statute of a group immovable cultural heritage site in conformity with the Master Plan of Sofia and Sofia Municipality Planning and Development Act in force.
that according to art. 20, Sofia Municipality Planning And Development Act “A person, who via action or inaction, damages or creates danger of damaging cultural and historic heritage sites, shall be fined to the amount from BGN 1,000 up to BGN 10,000, and when the offence is committed by a legal entity or a sole trader, property sanction shall be imposed to the amount from BGN 10,000 up to BGN 100,000.”
We appeal to
The Council of Ministers and Minister of Culture in the Republic of Bulgaria
to start urgent formation of the National Expert Board of Preservation of Immovable Cultural Heritage Sites, which on its turn will reevaluate in short terms the building development plan and the working spatial-development plan of the lot with the Villa Fingov approved so far by architect Georgi Ugrinov, Head of the National Institute of Immovable Cultural Values Protection, and mistreating
a model of Secession style architecture in Bulgaria – the Villa of architect Georgi Fingov.
We appeal to
The Minister of Culture
tо commit himself personally to preservation of the Villa of architect Georgi Fingov at 38 Shipka Str. in Sofia in its authentic appearance by search for alternative way of its adaptation and socialisation in compliance with the world-wide practice for conservation of peoples’ cultural memory.
We appeal to
The Sofia Municipality, The Council of Ministers,
The Minister of Regional Development and Public Works and The Minister of Culture
To start immediate elaboration of specific regimes, special rules and standard specifications for the separate territories/areas of cultural and historic heritage in Sofia Municipality.
We appeal to the professional organizations –
Bulgarian National Committee of ICOMOS, Union of Architects in Bulgaria,
Chamber of Architects in Bulgaria, Union of Landscape Architects in Bulgaria
To join this protest for defending cultural values of our country.
Sofia for us – Initiative committee of Movement for monuments of culture protection in Bulgaria,
Citizens for Sofia:
Sen. Res. M.Architect Petar Iokimov,
Ph.D,. M.Architect Ljubinka Stoilova,
M.Architect Galina Ivancheva,
Sen. Res. Ph.D. M.Architect Dobrina Zheleva – Martins Viana,
M.Architect Vladena Stavreva
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