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New exhibition:

"Yugoslav Testimonies of the Algerian Revolution - Archival Omnibus"

Yugoslav Testimonies of the Algerian Revolution - Archival OmnibusCurators: Mila Turajlić, Maja Medić, Ana Knežević, Emilia Epštajn

The "Yugoslav Testimonies of the Algerian Revolution - Archival Omnibus" exhibition is based on archival material and oral testimonies by Yugoslavs who actively provided assistance to the Algerian people during their struggle for independence from French colonial rule, until the official liberation in 1962.

The memories of cameraman Stevan Labudović, Red Cross employee Maja Plavšić, the Yugoslav ambassador to Tunisia, Miloš Lalović, as testified by his wife Borislava, add a "human" touch to historical events that we often perceive through strict chronologies and exhaustive enumeration of names and events. The founders of the Museum of African Art - Zdravko Pečar, then in the role of a war correspondent, and Veda Zagorac, in the position of press attaché at the Yugoslav embassy in Tunisia, join the aforementioned oral testimonies directed by documentary filmmaker Mila Turajlić.

 

Jovanka Broz and Borislava Lalović with delegation visiting the agricultural center in the Medjerde valley (News agency TANJUG, Archives of Yugoslavia)

Jovanka Broz and Borislava Lalović with delegation
visiting the agricultural center in the Medjerde valley
(News agency TANJUG, Archives of Yugoslavia)

Postcards with scenes from the struggle and life of refugees, published by BIGZ/Oglasni zavod Hrvatske - OZEHA (MAU documentation)

Postcards with scenes from the struggle and life of refugees,
published by BIGZ/Oglasni zavod Hrvatske - OZEHA
(MAU documentation)

 

Yugoslav Air Transport transfers aid to Bizerte, Tunisia (Private archive of the Plavšić-Duduković family)

Yugoslav Air Transport transfers aid to Bizerte, Tunisia
(Private archive of the Plavšić-Duduković family)

Zdravko Pečar and Veda Zagorac with delegates they welcome humanitarian aid from Yugoslavia (Private archive of the Plavšić-Duduković family)

Zdravko Pečar and Veda Zagorac with delegates
they welcome humanitarian aid from Yugoslavia
(Private archive of the Plavšić-Duduković family)

By recording conversations with the protagonists of this exhibition, Mila Turajlić and Maja Medić created new, valuable archival materials which, as it later turn out, was the last opportunity to record the testimonies of Maja Plavšić, Borislava Lalović and Stevan Labudović.

Maja Plavšić (From the art research project Non-Aligned Newsreels, with the support of Filmske Novosti; Director: Mila Turajlić, producer: Maja Medić)

Maja Plavšić
(From the art research project Non-Aligned Newsreels,
with the support of Filmske Novosti;
Director: Mila Turajlić, producer: Maja Medić)

Newspaper articles, photographs, correspondence, dispatches, and other personal belongings, are material traces of the enthusiasm and commitment to the idea of solidarity mobilization. In the folders and notes these same people kept, diaries and reports they wrote, but also on brochures, postcards, newspaper articles and other paper formats they considered important enough to be preserved, we recognise personal classifications, shaped by their own understanding of events, which today carries a special significance for a deeper understanding of the past in the contemporary moment.

The first gramophone record of independent Algeria published by Jugoton (MAU documentation)

The first gramophone record of independent Algeria published by Jugoton
(MAU documentation)

The exhibition opened on Saturday, March 18, at 12 noon at the Museum of African Art, the day on which the historic Évian Accords was signed in 1962 ending the Algerian War of Independence (1954-1962) and marking the end of French colonialism in this part of Africa.

At the opening of the exhibition Marija Aleksić, director of the Museum of African Art, and Mila Turajlić, film director and one of the curators of the exhibition, addressed the attendees, while the exhibition was officially opened by H.E. Fatah Mahraz, Ambassador of Algeria in Belgrade.

Photos from the opening of the exhibition:

The first public guided tour through the exhibition was held by the exhibition concept team Mila Turajlić, Emilia Epštajn and Ana Knežević, on Sunday, March 19, at 11 a.m.

The realisation of the exhibition was helped by: the Red Cross of Serbia, the Filmske Novosti archive, the Embassy of Algeria in Belgrade and the National Archives of Algeria, the Archives of Yugoslavia and the Diplomatic Archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia.

The exhibition includes materials from the Museum of African Art and the private archives of the Plavšić-Duduković, Labudović and Lalović families. The oral testimonies are part of the project "Non-Aligned Newsreels with the support of Film News", director and camera Mila Turajlić, producer Maja Medić.

Programme complementing the exhibition: Documentary diptych screening: "Non-Aligned & Ciné-guerrillas" directed by Mila Turajlić, (until March 28th at the Cultural Centre of Belgrade, find more information here.

The exhibition closes on June 11 and will be accompanied with additional programmes and events.

 

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