Exhibition view: ‘Cleaving the Wind into Fragments’; photo by Stefan Stark



Sculpture, Sound
165 x 75 x 40 cm / 165 x 150 x 65 cm / 140 x 160 x 135 cm / 140 x 100 x 25 cm

I would like to mention and thank my colleagues and friends who created and made this work possible by sharing their time, thoughts, and stories on return, over the course of one year; especially: Jelena Prljević (Return/ing from the USA to Serbia); Jelena Fužinato (Return/ing from Germany to Bosnia); Imra Bajramović (Return/ing from Canada to Bosnia); N.S.S. (Return/ing from Germany to Pakistan); Žarko Aleksić (Return/ing from Austria to Serbia); Tanja Šljivar(Return/ing from Germany to Bosnia); Aline Martinez (Return/ing from Germany to Brazil).


How does one feel when returning? What are the hopes and the fears embedded? What feeds the fear of returning? What are the reasons that make one leave or stay at the place they feel as home(s)?

“As though thrown by a giant hand and having sailed down slowly into the exhibition space, four airplanes lie spread out across the room. Their surface closely covered in handwriting, they seem to form a message of somebody who has disappeared — perhaps a farewell letter left behind?

What is the significance of the question of „returning“ for people who have made experiences of migration? Mila Panić has shared countless hours of conversations with people of the diaspora in her surroundings, talking about the question of returning or „going home.“ The experiences and thoughts are as diverse as the interlocutors, and yet there are always overlaps, shared concerns and fears, hopes and perspectives, showing that the thoughts of return are constant and multifaceted and sometimes fictional or in a form of dreams and desires. With her installation, Panić anecdotally opens up a view on very personal stories. At the same time, overarching questions appear in the conversations, concerning socially varying expectations in the context of gender or precarious working conditions in the cultural field, which often make a free choice of place of residence impossible. Theories about return migration tend to neglect the importance of the destination countries for the question of return.
While countries of the Global North often generate themselves as desirable destinations for migration, places enabling a “better life”, thoughts of return are often times omnipresent. The willingness of a country and society to accept migrants heavily influences opportunities of arrival and may make return psychologically inevitable.”
Text by Veronika Mehlhart

Through the project, I look into how the idea of return/ing is related to gender, geopolitics, privilege, language, and perceptions of the evolution of places of destination and origin. The project opens a space for intimate thoughts as a tool to resist further binarization of world hierarchies, antagonism and marginalization.


2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0673
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0658
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0734
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0668
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0675
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0672
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0670
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0662
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0669
2023 - KVB - BS Project_DSC0666

Exhibition view: ‘Cleaving the Wind into Fragments’; photo by Stefan Stark