Slovenj Gradec is the cultural and administrative centre of Slovenian Carinthia. With its notable medieval tradition, the town combines its rich heritage from the past with the fast-paced modern life. The Slovenj Gradec 2012 project was aimed at promoting cultural activity in small urban centres, which represent the future of European culture. Slovenj Gradec has been a Peace Messenger City since 1989, a title bestowed by the United Nations.
The city had a special role as a partner town of the Europe Capital of Culture with the project Sounds of the Past, which entailed a cultural and infrastructural renovation of the city, as well as notable high art events honouring the famous composer Hugo Wolf, a Slovenj Gradec native.
“Since the times of the Roman Empire, when a settlement and a post station called Colatio or Kolaciona were established at the foot of the Castle Hill just a shot away from today’s Slovenj Gradec, the town has had many connections with neighbouring areas. One of the most important connections is the artistic network, or “web”, spun by important artists who have created and are still creating, carrying on the legacy of Hugo Wolf, Ernest Goll, Jakob Soklič, Ljuba Prenner, Jože Tisnikar, Karl Pečko, Bogdan Borčič and others.” (Tomo Jeseničnik)