"Welcome", Installation, rope, chair, Installation view at "Real Presence" exhibition Bellgrade, 2005
“Welcome”, Installation, rope, chair, Installation view at “Real Presence” exhibition Bellgrade, 2005

“Border as metaphor in the work of Mladen Miljanović”

Since the fall of Yugoslavia in the nineties, Bosnia-Herzegovina, as one of the six former Yugoslav republics, is still caught in a complicated political situation saturated by Serbian/Croatian separatism and Bosnian unitarism. Divided into two semi-autonomous and self-governing units, and under an extensive international supervision, Bosnia-Herzegovina is tormented by an unsuccessful transition from socialism to capitalism, and from war to peace. Verified by the Dayton Peace Agreement in 1995, the country emerged as a dynamic laboratory for global diplomacy efforts and a variety of social experiments. In that context, the question of borders has been a focal point for diverse artistic research. This paper puts focus on the oeuvre of Bosnian artist Mladen Miljanović. In his practice, he is using state-, regional-, cantonal-, or mental-borders as an artistic element loaded with various meanings. The spectrum of interpretation of that artistic vocabulary spans from narration to fiction. By doing so, many social and political issues could be elaborated, such as patriotism, xenophobia, and claustrophobia, because in the Bosnian case, border has been perceived as isolation, division, enslavement, insecurity, threat, and conflict.


Irfan Hošić (*1977 ) completed his PhD thesis at the Department of Art History at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb. His field of research is the art of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the 20th and 21st centuries with slight focus on the aspects of crisis. He was a co-curator of the Pavilion of Bosnia and Herzegovina at the 55th Venice Biennale (2013). In the year 2013, he was teaching at the University of Michigan, in 2017 at the University of Paderborn, and in 2019 at the Florida Gulf Coast University. He is a Fulbright fellow to the College for Creative Arts in Detroit in 2019/2020. Hošić is an assistant professor at the Textile Department at the University of Bihać, where he teaches Art History and Modern Art and Design. He also works as an art critic and a freelance curator.


Irfan Hošić will give a 30 min presentation on Monday, August 19th from 13.45-14.15 during the seminar “Looking for another space of belonging”

Seminar Full Program