There are many ways to spend your Sunday mornings. I often spend mine at “Hrelić”, the Zagreb flea market. I don’t have to go abroad, travel for a long time or go to another city to change my environment. I just have to wake up early, get on my bike and in about twenty minutes I’m encountering a new world. I perceive it anew each time I encounter it but I live it only for a couple of hours on Sundays unlike the traders who live it for 24 hours each day.
Zagreb citizens generally see themselves as a part of a Western (Viennese) culture. However, when you find yourself at Hrelić on a Sunday morning, you realise you’re in a place which contains all elements of the Balkan stereotypes: poor people, Roma people, even poorer people, folk music and all kinds of strange smelling, unhealthy food. Most people you meet there are not selling because of lifestyle but because of a need to earn money.
The Hrelić flea market has been in its current location since 1972, initially an offshoot of a huge market for second hand cars. On Sundays 20,000 – 40,000 people visit it and on Wednesdays 5,000 – 15,000. Two years ago the Hrelić market was to be relocated due to an urban development concept which planned the construction of 20-floor skyscrapers in its current location. Luckily, the plan to close Hrelić was postponed, so it will remain where it is for a couple more years at least.
This film originated out of an ambition to document a culture which is ceasing to exist (as explained at the end of the film, in Croatian). Even after Hrelić closes down at some point in the future – or otherwise if it changes completely –the way I used to enjoy my Sunday mornings will be documented…
How to get to Hrelić: View Larger Map