UK charity organisation Remembering Srebrenicawill open the first ever virtual exhibition featuring the personal experiences of Bosnian genocide survivors on Monday 6th of July at 2pm British Summer Time.
Entitled ‘Remnants of Genocide’, the online exhibition has been created as a result of Bosnians from across the globe submitting their personal items, images and experiences of the war, genocide and its consequences.
Remembering Srebrenicastated on their website that this will be the “first-ever virtual exhibition using the testimony and artefacts from Bosnian Genocide survivors.”
Curated by Arnesa Buljušmić-Kustura, the Operations Manager of Remembering Srebrenica, and Amra Mujkanović, the charity’s Events Manager, the virtual exhibition is comprised of over 45 creative works, including paintings, photographic images, poetry, personal stories and artefacts.
According to Remembering Srebrenica,the virtual exhibition ‘Remnants of Genocide’ is one of their “highlights” of Srebrenica Memorial Week which will run between July 5 to July 12 as part of the 25th-anniversary commemorations of the Srebrenica Massacre.
Curator Arnesa Buljušmić-Kustura who noted there is “a shocking lack of discussion about the genocide”, said that the intention of the project was to facilitate the story-telling of the Bosnian Genocide by survivors without causing trauma and instead supporting catharsis.
“We wanted to tell the story of the Bosnian Genocide using survivors’ experiences creatively instead of forcing them to unload their trauma in a distressing way,” she said.
“It has been a healing process through art,” she added.
According to Ms. Buljušmić-Kustura, the personal narratives contained in ‘Remnants of Genocide’ serve to provide an essential human interest aspect to the virtual exhibtion.
“This exhibition has first-hand testimony which shows the horror of genocide but more importantly the stories are personalised, they show these victims were humans with lives ahead of them, with hopes and dreams and are not just numbers and statistics of people killed,” she said.
The curator said they received submissions for the project from around the world including Europe, North America and the Middle East.
Survivor Munira Subašić, who is also President of the Mothers of the Srebrenica and Žepa Enclaves, said ‘Remnants of Genocide’ is vital in making sure the genocide is unforgetten, acknowledged, and does not reoccur.
“This exhibition and the collection of personal stories are of imperative importance in remembering what happened.
“The 25th anniversary is a painful reminder that we have to do everything in our power to make sure that the genocide is not denied and history is not repeated.
“Personal memories and items that remind us of the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina should be our guiding light in raising awareness about war atrocities and genocide,” said Ms. Subašić.
“We owe it to ourselves to have our stories be heard.”
Written by Miya Yamanouchi for the Sarajevo Times