Balkan Artists Speaking Out

$1,115 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 15 people in 14 months
Created November 16, 2017
Going to Bosnia and meeting and interviewing 39 artists has been the latest and greatest consequence of a process that began in 2015 when I noticed the artwork I saw in China made by Chinese sculpture students could be interpreted as critical of the Chinese government and society. This surprised me because I expected Chinese students to be scared of making art that might get them in trouble with authorities. The following year I visited Cuba and was again surprised to see artwork by Cuban artists that could be interpreted as critical of the Cuban government and society. This inspired me to propose a sabbatical project that would allow me to visit Cuba for one month to interview Cuban artists about their artwork, their artistic process and the meanings in their artwork about social engagement issues, such as the repressive government in Cuba, of not having a voice in their society, etc.  Edo Makedo Vejselovic, Macedonian artist About the same time my sabbatical proposal was accepted in the fall of 2016 I was accepted in a Fulbright-Hays faculty development program to travel to the Balkans to learn about European Muslim culture and art in June 2017. Sinisa Labrovic, Croatian artist While I was in Bosnia in June I happened to turn on the TV in my hotel room to the BBC and saw Trump reversing Obama’s executive order opening up Cuba for visits by Americans, so that ended my chance to go back to Cuba for this project. David Lloyd Bradley and Smirna Kulenovic, Bosnian artist I successfully changed my sabbatical plan to go instead back to Bosnia this past October to meet and interview artists who make art on social engagement themes because while I was there in June I saw the many conflicts which have been waged in that region and which are still in play today. Miron Milic, Croatian artist The artists I met in Bosnia, Serbia, Croatia and Montenegro are all working to change their world for the better, and speaking truth to power in spite of the potential risks to themselves. Marina Kuzmanovic, Serbian artist The result of this has changed me and inspired in me to become a better human and better artist. Growing in me is a desire to make a change. As I grow older I find that I am crowded by the physical objects I have gathered and created, and have no need for things which simply are examples of my skill or aesthetic sensibility. Daniel Premec, Bosnian artist Instead I want to make things, and acquire things which tell a human story, and which stimulate the heart and spirit, as I have been stimulated by the artists who speak their minds and hearts in spite of potential physical harm or punishment. Damir Niksic, Bosnian artist and activist In the United States we have protection by the 1st amendment of the Constitution that guarantees the right to free speech, but in China, Cuba, and many other areas of the world, they have no guarantee to be able to say what they want. I have not spoken my mind about human rights abuses even though I am protected when I do, while artists in Bosnia speak out about ethnic cleansing, genocide, political corruption and gender inequality. Nedem Djikic, Bosnian artist I envision this Gofundme campaign as being a way to advance the efforts of the artists in the Balkans I met and interviewed. Some possibilities are: to directly gift the artists with funds raised via Gofundme; sponsored exhibitions of Balkan artworks in the US; or project funding for Balkan artists on an application basis. Mak Hubjer, Bosnian artist, David Lloyd Bradley Your donation will help make this possible. Thank you.
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Update 3
Posted by David Lloyd Bradley
12 months ago
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I've been working hard to edit the video interviews I made with the artists in the Balkans last October. I've had to learn how to use Adobe Premiere Pro video editing software and learned to appreciate Youtube video tutorials or I would be dead in the water!
Attached is a link to one of the videos. Please consider donating. We have a lot to do yet and need your help. Thanks, David
Interview with Mladen Miljanovic
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Update 2
Posted by David Lloyd Bradley
12 months ago
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Thanks so much to everyone who has donated so far. I've been working very hard to edit the videos I shot in October of the artists I met. I will be using the videos in my spring ceramics classes to inspire my students to make art expressing social engagement issues. Meanwhile, in Lubjana, Slovenia, my friend and partner in this project, Edo Vejselovic, is editing all the video interviews together to make a documentary about Balkan Art. The funds raised will help Edo, and, depending on how much we raise can go directly to the artists in Bosnia, Serbia, Croatia, and Montenegro who participated in this project as support for their art projects. I've also been busy making mugs, bowls and platters for reward gifts. Happy New Year!
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Update 1
Posted by David Lloyd Bradley
13 months ago
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Your donation will aid artists in the Balkans who don't have the right to free speech that we do in the US. Please help them as they change their world through their art.
Thanks
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$1,115 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 15 people in 14 months
Created November 16, 2017
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