Olja Triaška Stefanović is a visual artist, born in Novi Sad, Yugoslavia who moved to Slovakia in the 1990s leaving her family, friends at the time when her native country was disintegrating in the chaos of ethnic war and genocide and its aftermath.  Over the last decade or so, her art practice has focused on the politics of memory in the former Yugoslavia.
Her new book "Yutopislavia: intimate stories of non-alignment”, explores the culture and everyday life of her upbringing in a state built on the principle of ‘Brotherhood and Unity’ that instigated the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) in 1961. Using the intersection of the biographical and the familiar with the national and global political contexts, the book traces how the state’s involvement in the NAM shaped and oriented local political and cultural identities and lived experience. Founded on the production of an ‘alternative mundialization’, the NAM was an alliance of states seeking active peaceful coexistence, cooperation, independence and equality outside of the Cold War power blocs. It was built on mutual and transnational solidarity, cultural, economic and geopolitical exchange between predominantly newly independent states in what is referred to as the Global South. 
The title of Stefanović’s book is a portmanteau that brings the utopic aspiration and promise of the NAM with its counter-political imaginary and the Yugoslav state project together through the remnants and traces – family photographs, visual and material cultures, architecture, music and popular culture - of a past that is not fully past.  Using a wide range of found and archival sources juxtaposed with contemporary images, she asks what of the NAM’s legacy today, what might it reveal to us in our current moment and what resources might it provide if any for the future?
Author: © Olja Triaška Stefanović
Photographs: © Olja Triaška Stefanović, 2022 – 2024, New York, USA, San Francisco, USA , Berlin Germany, Belgrade, Serbia, Brijuni, Croatia, Rijeka, Croatia, Podgorica, Montenegro, 2023-2024
Editor: Olja Triaška Stefanović
Texts: © Olja Triaška Stefanović
Graphic design: © Lucia Tothová Mlynčeková

Published by: Academy of Fine Arts and Design, Bratislava

Circulation: 350 
PR: Michaela Svobodová
September, 2024 

You may also like

Back to Top