Accepted paper:

Materialising site


Nela Milic (University of Arts, London)

Paper short abstract:

The Serbian upraising in ‘96/’97 was an attempt to overthrow Milosevic dictatorship after he annulled elections won by the opposition. Ashamed by the unsuccessful protest, Belgraders have never produced an archive of artefacts which emerged during these demonstrations. My project is that archive.

Paper long abstract:

The narratives of Belgrade protest in '96/'97 known as "The Winter of Discontent" have been locked within the community and there are only odd visual references hidden in people's houses. My research generated those artefacts through interviews and image elicitation that looks at the uprising by analysing the accumulated historic relics. Presented in sections on the website (dates, artists, routes) and pages of art formats (poems, photos, badges), this overview of the geographical, political and social circumstances within which the protest's artwork was produced demonstrates how it influenced the actions of the citizens. My methodology - visual ethnography, assembles and interprets private and public realms, the human interaction and the spatial ground, Serbia's history and the new protest's culture to explore home and community and local and the global society, which emerged during the demonstrations. The purpose of the project is to develop the storage of cultural memory and collect images that people responded to sentimentally, which sustained this urban spectacle and enthused creative participation that became the force of the protest, exchanged between artists and other citizens. These were exposed on the streets during the walks of the masses, which symbolised reclaiming of streets as a public arena. This online package for capturing the past (hi)stories shifts the official narratives into only one possibility among others. It captures the failed revolution in Serbia under Milosevic since its beginnings, revealing the accomplishments of the academics, artists and citizens buried under the war stories...

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Radical memories, imagined futures: practices of history-making and prefiguration in social movements