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Federal Ministry of Defense

Belgrade, Serbia
1 of 13KOVAČEVIĆ, B. (2001). Arhitektura zgrade Generalštaba: monografska studija dela Nikole Dobrovića. Beograd, Novinsko-informativni centar ''Vojska''.

The two buildings designed by the architect Nikola Dobrović were constructed in 1955–65 to accommodate what then was Yugoslavia’s Secretariat for National Defense. The complex was conceived as an ensemble composed of two monumental blocks that descend in a stepped manner towards Nemanjina Street, thereby creating a city-locked symbol of the city gate. The blocks, slightly set back from the front lot line, are accessed via two monumental porticoes. Apart from expressive stepped forms, the design makes use of contrasting materials: the robust, dark red Kosjerić stone and the white marble slabs from the island of Brač. The most salient visual motif is provided by ribbon windows in a late modern vein. Dobrović’s design is a significant work of Serbian and Yugoslav post-WWII architecture. The expressive forms, siting and imposing presence of the complex located at the city’s busiest crossroads, have made it one of Belgrade’s most prominent architectural landmarks. This building was destroyed during the NATO bombings in 1999.