A pilot exhibition titled “The Labyrinth of the Nineties” is a first step towards the establishment of the “Museum of the Nineties” as a regional center for reconciliation, education, and future cooperation The exhibition aims to encourage a fresh look at the decade that transformed the lives of millions of people in this region (and globally) and whose repercussions we feel today, perhaps more than ever. It is the result of two years of research, collaboration, and joint work of individuals, experts, activists, and partner organizations from across the former Yugoslav region.
The question is whether as individuals and as societies we have come out of the labyrinth into which we fell in the early 1990s. Since the end of the wars, the post-Yugoslav political elites have consistently worked on spreading hate speech, especially when commemorating the anniversaries of traumatic events, with almost complete disregard for the lives and well-being of ordinary citizens. Instead of dealing with the war’s disastrous consequences, the conflict has been kept alive in people’s minds.
“The Labyrinth of the Nineties” is a reaction to policies that prioritize ethnonationalism and chauvinism over social justice, myths over human life, and violence above everyday solidarity. We invite visitors to wander freely through this labyrinth, and to look at this traumatic period from several perspectives, particularly from the perspective of those people whose lives were destroyed in a single day, those who were against the war, those who had to flee their homes, and those who were deceived by all sides.
No exhibition can fully encapsulate a decade in human history. It is certainly the case with the 1990s, which left a lasting impact on our region. This pilot exhibition is conceived as a cluster of fragments without a predetermined plan or instructions. We encourage visitors to complement this exhibition in their minds with what they believe is missing, what should be displayed, and what we must yet come to terms with. Only by collectively reflecting on the recent past can we gain a deeper understanding of our present and envision a different future.
The exhibition will be open to visitors from June 15 to July 14, 2023, in Space Miljenko Dereta,” Dobračina 55, Belgrade, every Monday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from 14h to 20h.