Our Philosophy

Protecting Nature and Free Expression Since 2004

Nove Starine, which is “New Ruins” in Croatian, is a collaborative project dedicated to promoting harmonious coexistence with the natural world, and fostering free, unfiltered artistic expression. Volunteers from the local community and abroad unite in their efforts to inspire changes in conventional ways of thought and spread Nove Starine’s mission of environmental stewardship and creative freedom.

Ivan Tokic, the master stone sculptor and founder of Nove Starine, dedicated the past fifteen years to turning what was an abandoned junkyard into a flourishing ecological preserve and artistic haven. Using reclaimed, unwanted items and the wealth of local natural resources, Ivan and his volunteers build eco-structures, grow organic sustainable foods, and create a beautiful variety of art installations. Through this experience, international volunteers and members of the local community learn to coexist more harmoniously with the natural world, and better express themselves through various artistic mediums.

Nove Starine is situated on 4.5 hectares of natural lands, and primarily consists of wild pine forest with a diverse array of species within its ecosystems. In addition to the natural amenities of the land, there are various projects that Ivan and volunteers have created, including a stone sculpture park, productive permaculture garden, library, communal kitchen, shower and sauna, an outdoor cinema, and a gym created from reclaimed materials. The facilities of the park are very energy and water efficient. Waste water from the sink is collected and used in irrigation; Wood stoves are used with sustainably harvested wood from the local environment; and the compost toilet saves water and doubles as a source of nutrients for the permaculture garden.

While the park provides a great deal of assets for the community, we are always looking to improve it! If you are interested in providing your artistic or practical improvements, learn how you can volunteer!