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Vladimir Šubic

Ljubljana, Slovenia
1 of 1Archive of MAO Ljubljana

Vladimir Šubic (23 May 1894 – 16 November 1946) was a Slovene architect. He was born in Ljubljana, Slovenia, which was at that time part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. His most significant building was Nebotičnik (Skyscraper) in Ljubljana, which was the tallest building in Yugoslavia upon its completion.

He studied mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Vienna (1912). A year later he studied shipbuilding at the University of Graz and in 1919 enrolled in the department of architecture at VTŠ in Prague. He returned to Ljubljana, then part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes and soon became a successful architect. His interest in contemporary architectural developments led him to design the first Slovene skyscraper, based on the most recent architectural developments. With this building he defined the vertical determinant for the construction of Ljubljana.

After World War II his career became endangered because of his liberal worldview, regarded as hostile by the new Communist authorities. In 1946 was conscripted among those who had to “build socialism”. He was first imprisoned on secret charges and sentenced to forced labor. In 1946 was sent by the Titoist regime of the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia to the work brigade in Bosnia, to work as an engineer on the construction of the Brčko-Banovići railway line. He died building the line the same year under unknown circumstances, although the cause of death was officially reported as a heart attack.

He was one of the few architects who understood the city and its architecture, even if it has been realized in a rather provincial environment of that time. Šubic understood architecture as the management of new construction techniques that are necessarily embedded in the social context of their time.

Ljubljana, Slovenia
Bostjan, April 16th, 2014