bosnia report
New Series No: 29-31 June - November 2002

- Regular Forums continue on the first Monday of every month (or the second, if the first falls on a Bank Holiday) from 7 pm to 9 pm at our usual venue, The Boardroom, University of Westminster, 309 Regent Street, W1 (in association with the Centre for the Study of Democracy).

The next meeting will take place on 2 December 2002, when Gordana Knezevic, deputy editor of Oslobodjenje during the darkest days of the siege, will introduce a discussion on the role of the press in wartime Sarajevo, and will also help to celebrate the publication - by Saqi Books in association with The Bosnian Institute - of Letters to the Celestial Serbs by Gojko Beric, her former paper’s most distinguished columnist.

- On 4 November 2002, Bozidar Jezernik, an eminent cultural anthropologist from Ljubljana - whose book Wild Europe will be published in 2003 by Saqi Books in association with The Bosnian Institute - introduced a lively discussion on the ‘The Balkan Myth’. The forum on 7 October 2002 was addressed by Tina Wik, Bosnia project manager for the Swedish-based Cultural Heritage Without Borders and herself a distinguished architect, who gave a presentation with slides on the ‘Restoration and Preservation of Historic Monuments in Bosnia-Herzegovina’. On 2 September 2002, Sacir Filandra, one of B-H’s leading younger intellectuals, tackled the highly topical theme of ‘Bosnia after 11 September’. On 1 July 2002 we had our first forum devoted specifically to the divided city of Mostar, when Colin Munro, who was based there in 2001 as deputy high representative for B-H, introduced a vigorous discussion on ‘The future of Bosnia-Herzegovina - a Mostar perspective’. On 10 June 2002 two outstanding documentary films - We are all neighbours (1993) and Returning home (2001) - were presented by their director, the respected Norwegian anthropologist Tone Bringa, who described the changes that occurred between the making of the two films, in the central Bosnian village where they were shot. Finally, on 13 May 2002, the editor-in-chief of Radio Television Mitrovica, Nexhmedin Spahiu, introduced a discussion on the situation in Kosova following the elections, the formation of an elected administration and the draft agreement signed in March between Serbia and Montenegro.

- On 19 May 2002 the ‘Out of Bosnia’ season was initiated by an inspiring event - organized by Multi-Culti, in association with The Bosnian Institute and Riverside Studios -at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, South Bank Centre, London, when the fabulous musicians of Mostar Sevdah Reunion gave their first concert in the UK to an enthusiastic audience.

Out of Bosnia programme medium

- From 19 to 29 September 2002, the ‘Out of Bosnia’ arts festival took place in London, presented by The Bosnian Institute in association with Riverside Studios, and coordinated by Tatiana Palinkasev. As the festival brochure put it, ‘Out of Bosnia celebrates the resurgent artistic energy of Bosnia-Herzegovina - a country that should no longer be defined solely by images and memories of its war in the early nineties...The festival features a rich array of performance, cinema, visual arts, literature, discussions and much more.’

Apart from the three theatre companies featured, who brought no fewer than seven individual productions from B-H to London, highlights of the festival included a rich retrospective film season, featuring works by Bato Cengic, Mirza Idrizovic, Elmir Jukic, Ademir Kenovic, Emir Kusturica (prewar!), Danis Tanovic, Srdjan Vuletic and others; a marvellous, packed literary evening hosted by Chris Agee, with the participation of Hamdija Demirovic, Ferida Durakovic, Aleksandar Hemon, Alma Lazarevska and Marko Vesovic; outstanding visual works by young B-H artists Nedzad Begovic, Edina Husanovic, Ivana Jeftic with Vanda Vucicevic, Zeljka Jovic and Dalibor Nikolic; and readings and discussions featuring among others Moris Farhi, Mai Ghoussoub, Celia Hawkesworth, Aleksandar Hemon (again), Dina Iordanova, Francis Jones, Joanna Labon, Andrea Lesic and Irena Mujacic-Carlton.


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