For many years, I have been going to the Balkans: Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo, more rarely Croatia and Albania. When I worked in NGOs, everything was destroyed and the future was uncertain ‘over there’. Things are not more secure or happy today, but they have become uncertain ‘here’ and elsewhere, with the disappearance of biodiversity and global warming “helping”. I continue to go there. And I feel good there today as I did yesterday. My outlook is changing, our relationships are transforming. A truly living relationship.
Back to Višegrad, my first documentary movie
Four years of working, writing, traveling and spending time in Višegrad, four years of thinking, discussing, meeting, shooting, editing, post-production are coming now to its end.
I was not alone on this journey. First of all, my producer, Elisa Garbar who believed it was possible and who supported me, then Antoine Jaccoud who came to help me with the writing and who finally accepted to do this movie with me. Then there were the shootings during one year with our team, cinematographer, sound engineer, interpreter and driver.
Then came our editor, the calibrating team, the sound designer and mixer. There you have it, in full planetary confinement, my first documentary film is finished. So I’m waiting for theaters to reopen, for festivals to take place for real, for our distributor to consider a release. I’m both extremely happy that it finally exists and very frustrated not to be able to show it and see it in a movie theater. We will have to wait and not give up.
All the collective, interdisciplinary initiatives related to the Balkans feed me. I have been participating with constant pleasure for years in Memory Lab, a network of European exchanges on the way to tell, to transmit (through writing, museography or images) the mass crimes of the 20th century. Each year, we visit a country together to explore how it tells and assumes its history. At Memory Lab, I don’t film. I take pictures, I discuss, exchange, investigate. I resource myself.
Exploring hidden history (2016)
Young people from Germany, France, Bosnia and Serbia are travelling together on the roads of Serbia and Bosnia during 10 days. Step by step, by visiting the places (Belgrade, Srebrenica, Prijedor) and meetings with witnesses, they discover that history can still be palpable and a burning topic. I followed them and I directed a film at the request of YIHR from Bosnia, Na Pola Puta from Serbia, the Max Mannheimer Studienzentrum from Germany and the CCFD-Terre Solidaire from France. Here it is:
No name (2011)
In 2011, I participated in a workshop on documentary film directing at the Ateliers Varan. There, I made my first documentary film No name. Milomir Kovačević is a photographer from Sarajevo. He has lived in Paris since he had to flee his country during the war. I followed him through his Parisian meandering as I sought to make visible the traces of its past. In order to watch the movie in French language:
To see the Bosnian version of the movie, it’s here: https://vimeo.com/juliebiro/noname-bcs