THE DUNĐERSKI CASTLE COMPLEX IN ČELAREVO

The Dunđerski Castle complex in Čelarevo, with the old castle, outbuildings and park is a very valuable cultural and natural heritage of Serbia (Vojvodina). It was put under state protection and ranked at the highest level of exceptional (national) importance for Serbia.
It is a complex that was in development for over a century, starting in the late 18th century when The Old Castle was built on the road leading to today's brewery. The New Castle, of greater dimensions, was built by Nikola Bezeredi and his wife Charlotte in the fourth decade of the 19th century, according to the then current classicist idea of returning to nature. This is one of the many noble edifices built as summer houses throughout Pannonia, of which 49 have survived on the fertile plains of Vojvodina. A very important period for the complex and the town of Čelarevo (formerly CEB) began when the landowner Lazar Dunđerski purchased the properties in 1882 and the castle became the venue of important figures from the world of art and politics. In the period after World War II the building was confiscated from the Dunđerski family and became property of the State. It was first used as a residential building, where President Tito stayed. In 1967 the building was designated for the use of the Vojvodina Museum (now the Museum of Vojvodina) and it house an exhibition of antique 18th and 19th century furniture. The museum was well attended and was a frequent destination for school trips. Due to its poor state and the start of conservation-restoration works, it has been closed to the public since 2002. The castle is the work of an unknown Viennese architect and a prominent example of classicist architecture. The park is entered through two gates, accented with postaments with stone figures of seated lions. The Castle is approached through the front, French garden. The building consists of a ground floor, basement and attic. The building is symmetrical with a centrally placed atrium which leads into salon and a central hall leading to the remaining rooms.
The exterior of the castle is characterized by a pronounced horizontality and calm symmetry. The main entrance is centrally placed and consists of prominent portico with four Doric columns, tympanum, stairs and sloping ramps for vehicular access. The facade is further characterized by rhythmically spaced windows with balusters. The rear of the castle is simply solved with the opposing protruding part with wide steps and a row of identical windows. The Attic has Roman numerals MDCCCXXXVII the year of the completion of the construction ( 1837). The side walls are formed equally, except that in the south wall is a door to the basement and side entrance to the castle. The roof has four water, covered with plain tile with decorative elements of sheet copper (snow stops, gutters, dormers, etc..). The park around the castle is also protected and noteworthy for its collection of rare plants.

CONSERVATION-RENOVATION WORKS TO-DATE:

Conservation and restoration works at the castle have been carried out on several occasions since it served as a museum.

• From 2002 to 2004 works were carried out on the roof and delapidated ceiling structures.
• In 2006. The Carlsberg Brewery becomes the guardian of the park and funded the repair of the fence. Special attention was given to professional restoration of the metal elements and missing parts were replaced by ones forged in the traditional way, carefully returning the fence to its authentic original condition. Most effort was required for the conservation and restoration of the double entry gates, especially those removed more than 20 years ago during the tarmacing of the access path.
• Works resumed in 2011 but the situation had drastically changed for the worse due to the theft of copper metal and water penetration inside the monument. The greatest volume of work was done to repair ceiling joists. Conservation and partial replacement of worn-out windows was also carried out.
• Work on the restoration of the castle continued in 2012 and included repair and restoration of the interiors and facades. In the hall the inlaid wooden parquet floor was taken up, and the damp clay surface was replaced with concrete slab over which layers of insulation were placed, thus ensuring a dry solid surface for the return of the flooring. The hall ceiling was plastered and the damaged plaster molding restored. In areas selected for repair and restoration, according to the degree of risk and the the possibility of putting it into operation a more effective presentation of the castle, the damaged plaster was stripped, the walls were re-plastered and rooms painted. The woodwork in these areas is fully conserved and restored. The east, south and north facades have been repaired, restored and painted in the colour chosen after examination of the paint layers.
The works carried out so far have, to a large extent ,removed the risk of degradation of materials and construction, which were a danger to visitors, and the castle is ready for partial opening to the public, and use as a venue for cultural events. However, for complete restoration and full use, it is necessary to continue work.

Long-term programme of work on the rehabilitation of The Dunđerski Castle complex in Čelarevo:
- Design of the interior: all three floors and the accompanying installation projects are concrete and defined terms of reference,
- Development of landscaping of the park,
- Reconstruction and replacement of installations (electrical, plumbing, heating , microclimate controls, video surveillance ),
- Interior museum design ( flooring, wallpaper , plastics , lighting fittings )
- Adaptation of basements,
- Adaptation of the attic space,
- Regulation of the park , perimeter walls , paths , placing street furniture,
- Setting up notice boards (including signs),

- Popularization of the Palace through the media and professional literature,
- Establishment of museum exhibitions with the theme of the Dunđerski family, brewing ( with beer tasting from Čelarevo brewery in the basement) , and the use of ornament as a representative multi-purpose space in the Performing and Fine Arts , maintenance, special events , conservation workshops , master classes and the like .