The project «TESTIMONY – TRUTH OR POLITICS: the Concept of Testimony in the Commemoration of the Yugoslav Wars » was funded with the support of the European Union under the Programme "Europe for Citizens"
Strand 1 – "European Rememberance"
One preparation event and 3 main events have been carried out within this project:
Preparation event: Preparation Seminar
Participation: The event involved 40 citizens, including:
5 participants from the city of Novi Sad (Serbia),
2 participants from the city of Zrenjanin (Serbia),
18 participants from the city of Belgrade (Serbia),
2 participants from the city of Vranje (Serbia),
1 participants from the city of Arilje (Serbia),
1 participants from the city of Novi Pazar (Serbia),
1 participants from the city of Vienna (Austria),
1 participants from the city of London (UK),
1 participants from the city of Bucharest (Romania),
1 participants from the city of Dublin (Irland),
1 participants from the city of Banja Luka (Bosnia & Hercegovina),
2 participants from the city of Trento (Italy),
2 participants from the city of Bari (Italy),
1 participants from the city of Berlin (Germany),
1 participants from the city of Osijek (Croatia),
1 participants from the city of Sarajevo (Bosnia & Hercegovina),
1 participants from the city of Switzerland,
Location / Dates: The event took place in Ceptor - Frushka Gora (Vojvodina, Serbia), from 13/12/2016 to 15/12/2016
1. To familiarize project participants (artists, scholars, project team and partners, war participants and anti-war activist) among themselves through their presentations and in informal settings.
2. To present the materials gathered in the former project Naming IT war (testimonies (interviews), TV programs made of the round tables and radio programs made of the interviews).
3. To introduce the participants to and discuss the theoretical background of the project as well as to contextualize it historically. (a list of books mentioned in the discussions was sent after the seminar)
4. To increase participants sensitivity to the languages of testimony in general and especially of war through an internal seminar Testimony. Poetry. Language.
Event 1: Traveling Exhibition
Participation: The event involved about 3000 citizens,
Including 20 commissioned artists who also visited some of the locations.
The artists were from:
3 Artists from Novi Sad, Serbia; 4 Artists from Belgrade, Serbia; 1 artist from Novi Pazar, Belgrade; 1 artist from Bucharest, Romania; 2 artists from Bari, Italy; 1 artist from London, UK; 1 artist from Bristol, UK; 1 artist from Budapest, Hungary (living in Switzerland); 1 artists from Skopje, Macedonia; 1 artists from Osijek, Croatia; 1 artists from Dublin, Ireland; 1 artist from Sarajevo, B&H; 1 artist from Berlin, Germany; 1 artist from Poland (living in Stockholm, Sweden);
including visitors to the exhibition, guided tours participants and public in round tables and other accompanying public events:
In Trento, Italy - 200 visitors to the exhibition and 60 attended the round tables (round table participants were from Trento, Italy; Rijeka, Croatia; Belgrade, Serbia; London, UK)
In Belgrade, Serbia – 500 visitors including the accompanying events (75 participants in the accompanying events from Serbia)
In Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina – 1200 visitors mainly from B&H but also groups from Italy and tourist from other countries. (The accompanying 2 round tables included guests from Vienna, Austria and were attended by 70 people)
In Vienna, Austria – 1000 visitors including the accompanying events (100 people from Vienna participated the round tables and educational workshops)
Banja Luka, Bosnia & Herzegovina – 50 visitors including the accompanying events (The accompanying 2 round tables included guests from Vienna, Austria and were attended by 20 people)
Location / Dates: The event took place in five locations:
Boccanera Gallery (Trento, Italy), from 17/11/2017 to 08/12/2017
The Museum of Contemporary Art Belgrade (Belgrade, Serbia), from 14/12/2017 to 29/01/2018
The Historical Museum of B&H (Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina), from 06/03/2018 to 06/04/2018
Volkskundemuseum (Vienna, Austria), from 12/04/2018 to 30/09/2018
BASOC (Banja Luka, Bosnia & Herzegovina), from 17/04/2018 to 05/05/2018
1. To contribute to the inclusion of the Yugoslav wars in the European historical narrative by disseminating knowledge about the wars and the first-hand experience (testimonial) of their participants in a variety of locations and publics.
2. To encourage European and ex-YU state cultural institutions and other major local actors to deal with the YU wars and network them by that giving legitimization to the testimonies and the witnesses which contributed to developing an understanding of the act of testifying as essential form of democratic and civic participation.
3. To democratize and diversify the narrative of the war by exhibiting experience of ordinary war participants and by that counter the one-sided, politically motivated narratives of different actors in each country.
The engaging nature of the exhibition itself and the wide variety of accompanying activities allowed citizens to take part in in a variety of ways from passively listening to the audio works and testimonies, through actively offering interpretations and comments in the different workshops and guided tours to giving testimony themselves.
Event 2: conferences
Including 120 participants in the first conference Testimony. Poetry. Language.
95 students, activists, and artists from the city of Belgrade (Serbia), and in particular lecturers and session chairs from: 4 participants from the UK; 1 participant from Macedonia; 8 participant from the Croatia; 3 participants from Austria; 10 participants from Bosnia and Herzegovina; 7 Participant from Serbia; 1 participant from France; 1 participant from Finland; 1 participant from Slovenia; 1 participant from Italy and 4 participants from the USA.
Including 100 participants in the first conference Testimony. Commemoration. Wellbeing
Including 70 students, activists, and artists from the city of Srarjevo (Bosnia & Herzegovina) and Belgrade (Serbia), and in particular lecturers and session chairs from: 1 participant from Romania; 2 Participants from the UK; 1 participant from Macedonia; 1 participant from Croatia; 1 participant from the Netherland; 1 participant from France; 1 participant from Kosovo; 11 participant from Serbia; 10 participants from Bosnia & Herzegovina; 2 participants from Austria; 1 participant from Germany and 2 participants from the USA.
Location / Dates: The event took place:
in The Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory and the Center for Cultural decontamination (Belgrade, Serbia), from 14/12/2017 to 17/12/2017
in the Philosophical Faculty of Sarajevo University (Sarajevo, Bosnia & Hercegovina) and in The Institute for Philosophy and Social Theory and the Center for Cultural decontamination (Belgrade, Serbia), from 20/04/2018 to 28/04/2018
Each conference reflected on three aspects of the topic: testimony in the commemoration of WWII and the way it functions as a model for the commemoration of the Yugoslav wars; different discourses and uses of testimony in todays’ commemoration practices of the Yugoslav wars; and contextualizing these in the current EU and global discourse of remembrance.
Event 3: Interactive social network archive
In addition, 150 previously made interviews were processed; the archive attracted more than 300 users.
Location / Dates: The event took place in the private homes of the interviewees or in coffee shops in the cities mentioned above from 15/10/2016 to 15/10/2017
• 60 new interviews have been conducted in Serbia, B&H and Vienna.
• website http://svedocanstvo-imenovatitoratom.org/
• A social network, interactive audio-testimony archive
• Over 200 interviews were technically prepared
• 80 interviews in BHS and Italian have been time coded and tagged
More than 10,000 people were informed about the activities through the mailing lists, announcements which held the major concept of the project.
We estimate that the wall newspapers was read by 3-4000 people
The advertisements and feuilletons were published in daily paper Danas which circulation is about 6000 all over Serbia.
The interview about the conference in N1 was in the morning program that reached a few tens of thousands of viewers.
In addition, the Association of Serbian War Veterans consulted on drafting the Law, participated in some of the interviews and informed their 70,000 members about the project activities especially the exhibition.
To circulate the projects’ contents among the Italian/European public sphere, OBCT distributed several news alerts among OBCT press contacts reaching out to around 50.000 followers. The information campaign on OBCT website reached out to an online audience of over 17.141 page views.
Other promotion activities by OBCT reached over 500 people especially academics, artists and activist interested in the themes of the project.
Since information and discussion of the exhibition was on the major news and culture press and portals, as well as reportage including interviews with the curator and artists in major TV and radio station we expect that a few hundred thousand people were exposed to it.
Over 30,000 people were informed by the direct promotion and information activities of Boem and the Volkskundemuseum
17,000 Brochures were printed, 350 big posters and over 3500 emails
IOS mainly dealt with distribution the call for papers and promoting each conference and so reached about 2000 academics.