Posts Tagged ‘Migracija’

La Grand Escalier de la Gare du Saint Charles a Marseille, France, December 17, 2015.

In Marseille, Railway-stations on December 18, 2015 at 9:53 am

On December 17, 2015, from about 12:45 to 13:30h, on my way from village of Vauvenargue and Aix-en-Provence to Géneve, I performed my “Missplaced Women?” on la Grand Escalier de la Gare du Saint Charles a Marseille. As I had almost an hour of time, while waiting for my TGV train, I enjoyed the gorgeous staircase and the view from the top. I enjoyed watching people passing by. People in transit and people hanging out there. I took time to find inside of my suitcase things I actually needed in my hand bag, and I took a moment to refresh my vernis that got worn out in past few days in la Provence. Young guy whom I asked for assistance to capture a photo of me did it with a pleasure and used a chance to warn me that i should not ask other people for such favour as they might run away with my photo camera. As he gave me back my camera, he advised me as well to pack my stuff and to keep them close to myself.

Misplaced Man? performance in Aberdeen Airport – Contribution by Amy Bryzgel

In Aberdeen, Airports, Border, Performances, Signs on December 8, 2015 at 8:33 am

One question I always had in my mind with regard to Misplaced Women? was: what about Misplaced Men? Of course, I am aware that Tanja’s work focuses on women because they are perhaps the most vulnerable in situations related to migrations, most notably with regard to trafficking, humiliation, and separation from families. And those who know Tanja’s work also know that she does not deal exclusively with women. Her film, Sans Papiers (2004, together with David Rych), tells the stories of many men being held in detention centres in Germany. So, when the opportunity arose, I decided to stage a Misplaced Man? performance in Aberdeen.


Misplaced Man? sign. Aberdeen Airport. Sign and photograph by Amy Bryzgel.

In the summer of 2015 I started organizing a conference that would involve both research talks and performances. I wanted to have a performance that would take place in the context of the presentation of papers, one that would disrupt the rhythm of the lectures. I immediately thought of Branko Milisković’s work, specifically his performance The Speech, which is part one of a two-part performance. Branko’s speech usually lasts around 4 hours, but given the time and space of the conference, and that this would be just one presentation of many, I asked him to do just 45 minutes of it. I wrote to invite him, and he agreed.

I knew, when I invited Branko, that as a Serbian passport holder, he would need a visa to the UK. As a US citizen (who has now naturalized in the UK), I knew all too well the complicated procedures for obtaining visas. And over the summer of 2015, a story broke about a group of performance artists from Georgia who were all denied visas to travel to the UK to participate in a performance art festival. Of course, I didn’t know the reasons behind that decision, but it was enough to give me pause about inviting Branko. But, I decided that I didn’t want to make an artistic decision based on nationality or bureaucratic procedures. That said, in inviting Branko, I was also aware that I was putting him in a situation that would be very trying for him—because although I could provide some help and support for his visa application, the burden was entirely on him to collect and submit the papers, to surrender his passport, and to wait for the decision as to whether his application deemed him worthy to enter and perform in the UK.

From the time that I invited Branko, on June 10, 2015, until the day that he received his visa on September 9, 2015, around one hundred emails were exchanged, regarding Branko’s visa. No art was discussed during this time. There was no discussion about the content of his speech, the logistics of his performance, how it would fit into the programme—nothing. It was not simply that we put off planning the performance until it was confirmed that he could come to the UK, but that there was simply no mental space or energy for either of us to do so. As the process went on, I felt worse and worse about putting Branko in that situation, as it was clearly very stressful for him, but wondered what choice I had: either I didn’t invite an artist that I thought was very talented and would make a valuable contribution to the conference simply based on the passport he held, or, I would undertake this task, knowing that it would put the artist under pressure.


Branko Milisković, Misplaced Man? performance, Aberdeen Airport, UK, October 29, 2015.

In the end, we were successful, and from my view while I was glad we both took the risk, of course the process could, and should, have been easier and less stressful. But, because we are in the arts, we decided to use our power of expression to bring these issues into the public sphere in a different way. I proposed that Branko do a version of Misplaced Women? as a Misplaced Man? He is pictured here at Aberdeen Airport, just after having been cleared entry into the UK. Interestingly, he is standing in front of a picture of Dunnottar Castle, where I had taken Tanja when she was in Aberdeen in April 2015. Above him, a sign reads “currency exchange.” In fact, it was art that was Branko’s currency—his cultural capital is what enabled him to receive a visa to the UK and do his first performance there. I am glad to report that he is not a Misplaced Man.


Please see directly related — ENTRY CLEARANCE – contribution by Branko Milisković to the Misplaced Women? project, August 30, 2020.


Mmakgosi´s Story

In Gaborone, Stories on November 28, 2015 at 7:48 pm

Love in the time of water shortages, power cuts, heat waves, slow internet if any at all, price tags on quality education for all, horrid state of affairs with regard public transport if any at all, holding your breath whilst some ghost gatekeepers decide on your legality to move freely in a world which essentially as a Human is your birth right to inhabit as and when and where with whom you please…

Love in this time is not for the faint hearted.

The road is not for the swift.

Remember that you are seeds, you have it in you to be dormant till the time is ripe to rise. Because overcome and rise we shall. Just remember. Love.

Love in the time when modesty is advertised through loud hailers, compassion and empathy shown by fleeting social media status updates…

Love in this time is not for the faint hearted.

Love in the time when opposition to the leadership fears being brushed off, when the leadership is a mockery of the statues of democracy and independence, when human dignity is ripped to tatters.

Love in the time when unsystematic systems further entrench a people in poverty, when developing countries seem to never cross the threshold of development, when a 1st World and a 3rd World are acknowledged in one World…

Love in this time is not for the faint hearted.

Nia sang ‘The road is not for the swift… but for those who endure in righteousness’. Remember that you are seeds, you have it in you to be dormant till the time is ripe to rise. Because overcome and rise we shall.

Just remember. Love in the time where there is no time. Make time. Love



The garden (on the picture) is in Gaborone, Botswana in Mmakgosi´s mothers yard, where she wrote this poem waiting for her visa application to be processed.



Mmakgosi Kgabi is a Performance Artist born in Botswana, has lived in Johannesburg, South Africa and is currently in the process of migrating to Germany.

Photo credits: Noxolo Kapela and Mmakgosi Kgabi

Nela Antonović´s Story / Priča Nele Antonović

In Belgrade, Stories, Workshops on November 10, 2015 at 12:16 pm

Priča Nele Antonović / Nela Antonović´s Story (English version is still in preparation) 

Uobičajeno refleksije i evaluaciju redionica napišem odmah, ali sam ovog puta čekala sedam dana zbog kompleksnosti projekta “Missplaced Women?” Tanje Ostojić, u kojem sam uzela učešće. Bez obzira što imam veliko iskustvo u radu sa učesnicima radionica preko 30 godina metodom Mimart, kao i raznih specifičnih metoda neformalnog obrazovanja mladih i građana koje vodim, kao učesnica radionice ovoga puta bila sam uzbuđena jer dugo pratim Tanjin umetnički aktivizam i pratim njen rad, a sa druge strane od aprila aktivno pratim prolazak migranata kroz Srbiju.

Zanimljivo je što su se na radionicu prijavile učesnice različitih godina, iskustava i zanimanja, što je bila velika vrednost. Često vodim radionice motivacije, tako da mi je bilo važno da na početku dana čujem i njihova mišljenja, zašto su došle. Spontani i inspirativan uvodni razgovor i priprema za performans „Missplaced Women?“ u prostorijama REMONTa u opuštenoj i demokratskoj atmosferi nametnuo mi je pitanja: Razumemo li mi dovoljno pojmove tolerancije, slobode, empatije, poimanja timskog rada i pojam različitosti? Negujemo li dovoljno vrednosti performansa, kao važnog izraza savremene umetnosti? Razumemo li dovoljno da performans preispituje društvo i ukazuje državi o važnim problemima društva? Performans je sredstvo društvenih promena i kao takav donosi veliki doprinos zajednici. Uvodni razgovor bio je važan za slobodu govora i mišljenja, jer nas je autorka prepustila svojim razmišljanjima i otvorila kao u psihodrami mudrim prepuštanjem nama da komentarišemo očekivanja. Zanimljiv je bio momenat približavanja haosu u demokratskom tumačenju pozivnog pisma koje smo dobile za radionicu, šta treba da donesemo, odnosno šta nedostaje migrantima. Različita pitanja nas učesnica na početku vezana za pozivno pismo, bila su odraz našeg nepoverenja u informacije, naših strahova o nametanju mišljenja, do trenutka kada smo svi zajedno krenuli u Miksalište..

Kada smo pošle u Miksalište, ne znam po koji put sam potvrdila svoju teoriju da se jedino telom može ući u fenomen, jer možemo da mislimo i da se reči umnožavaju a da se ne pokrenemo u akciju. Iako od jula meseca idem u Miksalište veoma često, donosim svoje stvari i stvari svojih prijatelja, higijenske artikle, čajeve i druge jednostavne svakodnevne potrebštine, ovoga puta kada smo otišle zajedno videla sam kese na kojima piše BORDER. To mi je mnogo značilo jer smo videle da se briga o migrantima zapravo vidi od trenutka kako uđu u zemlju, pa dok ne odu dalje… Ne želim da glorifikujem Srbiju u ljudskom odnosu prema migrantima, ali primetila sam da to oni osećaju i da jedino kod nas stoje u redu kada su u pitanju registracija izbeglica, podela hrane, podela tople odeće i obuće, čaja… Toga dana srela sam poznate volontere i ljude dobre volje iz Beograda, zatim Nedeljka iz Srebrenice koji je takođe bio izbeglica i mnoge mlade iz srednjih škola, ali i nove volontere strance koji su se potom uputili sa izbeglicama kasno popodne dalje do Hrvatske granice. Uglavnom smo naišli na migrante iz Avganistana koji su stigli preko Bugarske, i ovo su bila potpuno nova i drugačija iskustva za mene jer sam do sada upoznavala uglavnom ljude koji su došli iz Sirije, Libije i Pakistana. Naravno nemoguće je otpratiti svakog pojedinačno, niti saznati kako su se snašli, koliko i kako su dalje putovali, svejedno moram priznati da je svaka kiša izazivala kod mene nesanicu.

Iskustvo samog izvođenja performansa u parku kod autobuske stanice, koji smo počeli da zovemo Info park, i u parku kod Ekonomskog fakulteta za mene je imalo posebno značenje. Letos sam u parkove spontano dolazila, donosila voće i bonbone, držala radionice deci, pričala sa ljudima.. Stotine priča. Stotine sudbina. Mnoge sam upoznala, sa nekima se još uvek dopisujem, neke sam dovodila da se okupaju i odmore kod mene kući. Ponekom sam kupila kartu, kupovala sladolede, delila kišobrane… Sve to mi je prolazilo kroz misli dok sam vadila stvari iz tašne. Svaka stvar je izneta, i razmišljala sam o tome koliko žena je svoje tašne i torbe, sitnice potrebne i nepotrebne, negde ostavilo usput.

Setila sam se kada su migranti krenuli kroz Srbiju da je na drvetu pored koga smo stajale za vreme performansa stajao plakat/crtež koji je davao uputstva migrantima gde da putuju i kojim prevozom mogu da stignu na željena odredišta. Setila sam se događaja od pre deset godina koji mi se desio u Parizu. Dalija Aćin i ja, bile smo na jugu Francuske u Belfortu. Ona je imala povratnu avionsku kartu za Beograd jedan dan pre mene, i tada sam osetila važnost informacija koje dobiješ od prethodnih putnika. Od nje sam dobila SOS uputstvo, jer je rekla da ako u sekundi ne budem na pravom mestu neću stići do aerodroma. Ovo upozorenje i uputstvo mi je bilo dragoceno jer sam menjala 4 prevoza, išla sam bez novca i imala samo unapred kupljene karte. Ovo je ustvari priča migranata koji su ostali bez telefona, kojima sam pozajmljivala svoj telefon da samo vide gde im je rodbina, prijatelji i čitali su uputstva koja su deljena na društvenim mrežama. Nazer, mladić koji je prišao Tanji bio je srećan što opet ima neke stvari u torbi, što je jeo, ali je spomenuo da mu treba telefon. To je glavna potreba migranata, mreža informacija koja im je važna da bi znali gde mogu i kako da prođu.

Ovoga puta u parkovima je bilo malo migranata zbog promena ruta i zbog boravka u azilantskom centru u Krnjači zbog hladnoće. Toga dana oko 16h su došli u Miksalište, pojeli nešto i u 17h otišli dalje autobusima…

Razgovor koji je Tanja Ostojić vodila sa učesnicama radionice nakon performansa kroz pripremu javne prezentacije, bio je važan jer sve dileme su odjednom bile prihvatljive, sve nedoumice razumne, nakon iskustva izvođenja performansa. Iskustvo koje smo ponele je važno, a za mene je ovo bila značajna radionica do-edukacije.

— Nela Antonović, umetnički direktor / art director, Teatar Mimart

Authors of the Photos from the “Missplaced Women?” performance workshop by Tanja Ostojić that took place on October 29, 2015 in Remont, Miksalište, Info Park and in Park in front of the Faculty of Economy, Belgrade are: Lidija Antonović, Jelena Dinić, Miroslav Karić, Srdjan Veljović

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Jasmina Tešanović´s Story

In Borders, Railway-stations, Stories on October 18, 2015 at 5:11 pm

Here I am now as a wannabe European woman traveling alone. Because you see, women don’t travel alone; they travel with their men, families or friends. If they are alone, it means they are lost or dangerous. I always get those looks and check ups, even friendly offers.

I entered in the first comfortable train heading north… to even more United Europe.

Border officers were entering my train, checking us, and it all went well, until we managed to come across one small piece of one small country that once used to be called Yugoslavia, that once used to be my own country.

I didn’t have the proper papers, they claimed. Politely, they took me out off the train, and even more delicately, they locked me behind bars. A small prison hut, really, with two young officers watching me from outside with guns.

Then they went through my suitcase, then through my hand bag and then through my computer.

They were amused:

– So, what are you doing here, madame, smuggling yourself in our country without a visa?

– No, I wasn’t , I said bewildered, I was just traveling back home.

– But you took the wrong train, you cannot travel Europe without a visa.

– No, I said, I just took a train that happens to cross this small country, a nation smaller than the city I come from, a country where the plastic covers on the haystacks look fancier than tablecloths in my country.

– We will have to charge you with an attempt to cross our border illegally.

– But I legally gave you my passport. It was a mistake, my country split up and Europe united…you know, it was such a big confusion…

– We don’t remember your ex-country. The two young blonde border officers stared at me.

I looked at them. Of course, they were too young to remember or even know, why would they care, they were just doing their job.

– You are a writer, one of them says.

– Yes, I am.

– What do you write about, asks he.

– Stuff like this really, I answered vividly, crossing the borders, messing with laws and people.

He was taken aback.

– We must take you immediately to your embassy, in the capital.

– No, I must call my lawyer, you must give me the phone.

It was actually a moment of hands-on struggle between us: the European new order and non-European individual.

The young officer said:

– If we let you go into no-man’s land between borders, you can wait for a couple of hours over there, and then enter Croatia, the country you travelled from. Since from tomorrow, the visa regime in Croatia for Serbs is abolished. You could sleep in the no-man’s land if they don’t let you into Croatia.

– It’ s a deal, I said.

And we did it.

They deported me a couple of kilometers, into nobody’s land where there was literally nothing. I walked slowly, dragging my luggage to the border, which soon enough would stop being one. I reached it, I crossed it because of a kind officer who looked the other way, and I took another train south.

Then a middle aged train conductor checked my new ticket to the south.

– Didn’t you go north only a couple of hours ago?

– Yes I did, I said. I tried to reach to my same destination but I took the wrong direction.

– Don’t you read your tickets, check your trains?

– No I don’t, I said peevishly, as if admitting that I never go to doctors for a regular check up.

– Well you should madame, this world today is all about trains and proper tickets and papers.

He was right: I looked at his kind elderly face with wrinkles, the devoted body bent over his conductor’s heavy bag, his stamps lost in a smaller bag. I imagined his long-sought pension round the corner, his future life, that of a railway clerk in pension: a little bit of gardening, a little bit of cooking, and a lot of memories of trips, and people he met and treated, or mistreated.

I remembered Walter Benjamin’s suicide at the border while waiting for a visa that arrived only hours too late. A Jew trying to escape Nazi Germany: a philosopher trying to describe the world he was living in. Which Benjamin did perfectly: only he did not have the patience and strength to survive it.

By Jasmina Tešanović


Editorial comment:


This story has been written in Jun 2003 at the time when visa regime between Croatia and Serbia has been finally abandoned. But Serbian passport holders still needed a visa for Slovenia. (Slovenia joined the European Union one year later, on 1 May 2004). Jasmina Tešanović actually traveled from Zagreb to Belgrade. The train she took first was going over Slovenia, then she had to change to the one that was going from Zagreb to Belgrade over Budapest and where she would not need a visa.

Jasmina Tešanović is a women without homeland and without mother tongue, who lives and works on-line.

This story that she has kindly contributed to the “Missplaced Women?” blog is a part from her on-line book in english: ”My Life Without Me”. In Serbian language “Moj zivot bez mene”, has been publish by Rende, Belgrade in  2013. Italian version  “La mia vita senza di me”, Infinito, Bologna, 2014.

Press review in Serbian, Missplaced Women? at Götheborg Airport / Novinarski prikaz performansa na Medjunarodnom aerodromu u Geteborgu

In News, Reviews on September 19, 2015 at 10:44 am

Press review in Serbian, Missplaced Women? at Götheborg Airport / Novinarski prikaz performansa na Medjunarodnom aerodromu u Geteborgu



Tanja Ostojić na Live Action
Fri, 09/04/2015

Umetnica Tanja Ostojić iz Srbije, koja živi i radi u Berlinu, učestvuje sa grupom internacionalnih umetnika na festivalu performansa “Live Action” u Geteborgu, na kojem predstavlja nove verzije radova “Misplaced Women?” i “Naked Life” koji su deo njenih dugogodišnjih istraživanja teme migracije, odnosno diskriminacije određenih društvenih grupa.

Novi performans iz serijala “Misplaced Women?” Tanja Ostojić je izvela 2. septembra na međunarodnom aerodromu u Geteborgu, na terminalu za dolaske, gde je oko 45 minuta vadila i potom vraćala celokupan sadržaj svoja dva kofera – ručnog prtljaga i torbe za kozmetiku.

Svaki predmet je pojedinačno vadila iz kofera, te potom vraćala, prikazujući svakodnevne životne aktivnosti koje su karakteristične za raseljenje ljude – migrante, izbeglice, ali i umetnike koji su primorani da putuju po svetu kako bi zaradili za život.

Tanja Ostojić, Misplaced Women?, aerodrom Geteborg, 2.9.2015, produkcija Live Action, foto: Li Qi Jian

Umetnica time nastavlja dugogodišnje istraživanje problematike migracija, mobilnosti, kao i odnosa moći i ranjivosti ženskog tela u tim procesima, koje je karakteristično i za njene ranije radove.

Performanse Tanje Ostojić iz serijala “Misplaced Women?”, koji je započet još 2009. godine, izvode i volonterke koje na javnim mestima raspakuju i ponovo pakuju svoje kofere na različitim javnim mestima. Tanja Ostojić pozvala je sve koji žele da izvode performans “Misplaced Women?” da podele svoje iskustvo na sajtu tog projekta, kao i u javnim diskusijama, a kao lokacije za izvođenje sugerisala je železničke stanice, ženske kuće, izbegličke kampove za ljude bez isprava, tržne centre, aerodrome, stanice metroa…

Tanja Ostojić, Misplaced Women?, Marsej, 20.9.2013, uz učešće: Jane Kay Park, Emma-Edvige Ungaro, Alix Denambride, Kim Mc Cafferty, Robyn Hambrook, Helen Averley Patricia Verity i Tanja Ostojić

U okviru festivala Live Action, koji se održava deseti put, Tanja Ostojić izvešće i novu verziju performansa iz takođe dugogodišnjeg serijala “Naked Life” koji je fokusiran na diskriminaciju Roma. Tanja Ostojić trenutno, kako je rekla za SEEcult.org, istražuje dugu istoriju diskriminacije Roma u Švedskoj – od 18. veka do danas, uključujući holokaust i prinudnu sterilizaciju romskih žena za vreme socijalizma u Švedskoj.

Tanja Ostojić će performans “Naked Life 4” izvesti 6. septembra u večernjem programu festivala “Live Action”, na kojem učestvuje sa još sedmoro umetnika iz različitih delova sveta.

Umetnici su pozvani da simultano predstave svoje radove u javnom prostoru u različitim delovima Geteborga, a među njima su Jörgen Svensson iz Švedske, Pekka Kainulainen (Finska), Chuyia Chia (Švedska/Malezija), Bonnie Tchien (Tajvan), Sioban Mullen (Velika Britanija), Yann Marussich (Švajcarska), Julien Blaine (Francuska), Lu Xiao (Kina) i Ali Al-Fatlawi i Wathiq Al-Ameri (Irak/Švajcarska).

Osnovna ideja festivala Live Action je da predstavi umetnost performansa u javnom prostoru, koji koriste građani u svakodnevnom životu, svi imaju pravo pristupa i pripada svima.

*Foto na vrhu: Tanja Ostojić, Misplaced Women?, aerodrom Geteborg, 2.9.2015, produkcija Live Action, foto: Li Qi Jian


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