Permanent exhibition about the history of ironmaking in Slovenia takes us from the ore to steel. Visitors are attracted by numerous models and reconstructions of the smithery with a smith’s hammer and other original tools. The life of workers and owners of businesses in the golden age of iron foundries from the 16th to the 19th century, when the iron foundries were powered by water, is presented as well. By its original set-up, which includes museum objects, playground equipment, audiovisual and research equipment, environment and corners with replicas, the exhibition provides an opportunity to compare the era of iron foundries with the time of industrialisation and the present world, and at the same time it encourages research streak, provides entertainment and relaxation.
The exhibition presents the housing conditions of ironmaker families Bucelleni and Ruard and officials of the Carniolan Industrial Company, who had a substantial influence of the development of ironmaking from the 16th to the 19th century. There is an ironworker’s salon with a library and a big reception room and an official’s flat with a wall painting preserved.
The owners of the ironwork facilities at Stara Sava had a lot of works of art. A collection from the 18th and 19th century, most of which used to be in the Church of St. Mary’s Assumption at Sava, can be seen in the museum now. They are an excellent presentation of the artistic situation in those times. Three altar paintings (all made in the period from 1730 to 1740) by Venetian master Nicola Grass (1682–1748) are particularly important. They are of extreme artistic value; they were ordered specially for the altar of the Church of St. Mary at Sava, which is of particular cultural significance as it shows that the commissioners had prestigious ambitions. Most other works show that in addition to the church connections with Ljubljana Diocese, the Upper Sava Valley used to be culturally and artistically connected also with the centre of the country – Ljubljana.