Mila Turajlić lives and works in Belgrade, RS, and Paris, FR
Mila Turajlić’s filmic practice explores the impact and legacies of the temporal, political, and social rupture of lived experience and identity in the Balkans in the violent aftermath of Yugoslavia’s dissolution. Her first feature documentary, Cinema Komunisto (2010), used archival material to interrogate the role of cinema in forging a sense of nationhood in Yugoslavia. Centered on the allegory of the divided family apartment, The Other Side Of Everything (2017) revisited the chapter of Yugoslavia’s collapse and the prominent role her mother, Srbijanka, played in the democratic insurgency against Slobodan Milošević’s ultranationalist, autocratic seizure of power. Turajlić’s The Labudović Reels (2021), is a feature documentary that delves into the legacy of the newsreels filmed by Stefan Labudović, a Yugoslav cameraman dispatched by President Tito to Algeria, Angola, and Tanzania in the 1950s and ’60s to produce images of liberation movements within the framework of showing solidarity among countries of the Non-Aligned Movement.
Between 1959 and 1962, Labudović documented the Algerian War of Independence (1954–62) for the Algerian Liberation Army, filming army trainings, guerilla incursions, the displacement of Indigenous populations, and the approach of victory and entry into the capital, Algiers. With the video and documentary installation Screen/Solidarity/Silence – Debris from the Labudović Reels (2022), forged from Labudović’s archival footage as well as newly recorded testimony, Turajlić seeks to plumb the motivations behind these filmic incarnations of antifascist and anti-imperialist solidarity and the meanings they activate in the present moment—especially after the 2019 eruption of the Algerian popular insurgency, HIRAK, which attempted to break the military’s hold over the country dating from its independence.
Southern Constellations: The Poetics of the Non-Aligned, 2019, Museum of Contemporary Art Metelkova, Ljubljana (SI)
Toward a Concrete Utopia: Architecture in Yugoslavia, 1948–1980, 2018, MoMA – Museum of Modern Art, New York City (US)
Toronto International Film Festival 2017, 2017, Toronto (CA)
47th Chicago International Film Festival, 2011, Chicago (US)