Srpska, No 8-9, english

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Year II  No 8-9, 2014  price 15 KM

Battles and Victories


On the occasion of 900th anniversary of the birth of Stefan Nemanja,

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Cover page: Nemanja Gordić, the best athlete of Srpska in 2014 (photo: Personal archives) CIP - Каталогизација у публикацији Народна библиотека Србије, Београд 008(497.6 Република Српска) ISSN 2334-8518, COBISS.SR-ID 199401228



ational Review is closing its second annual circle in Srpska. More than 2,000 pages in two languages, almost 400 articles, around 1,100 magazine and art photographs, dozens of authors are now before the readers. Srpska has been dressed in its best clothes and the most beautiful story. Standing tall, normal and true to itself. Readers are still responding excellently, both the locals and wellintentioned foreigners. However, our management and editorial board have been seriously discussing these days whether we would start the third circle. Why? We have started Srpska NR by invitation. We were asked to transplant here the project we have been successfully implementing in Serbia for eight years. In the first year we had high sponsorship of the President of the Republic. Even then we didn’t want this project to grow by burdening the people of Srpska, and we practically reduced our cost list to the cost of printing. Our intention was to cover everything else with income from marketing, from live commercial sources, on the grounds of mutual normal business interest. We were told that it was a really good example and that, on this basis, “all doors would be open” to us. That economic systems and state funds would realize a part of their regular advertising and marketing activities through Srpska NR. In this way they would realize their interests and functions and, at the same time, enable maintenance of this endeavor of importance for Srpska. With two exceptions, accidental and insufficient, none of this has happened. As if the “good example” was closing all the doors for us. The possibility to produce something one hundred times better for thirty times less money – that has become a unit of comparison that is looked upon askance in the para-systemic money laundromats and dark pockets of parasites. Many monstrous faces had to face themselves in that merciless mirror. They quickly made an agreement about the obstruction. But they are not our business and our care. In the second year, we published Srpska NR ourselves, with our resources and sacrifice, despite everything. We have done everything that was in our power, everything, and more than that. We can no longer do it on our own. Now, instead of thinking about the number of languages into which we should expand our publishing, we debate whether to keep going at all. On this crossroad, it is time for all those based on whose good suggestion we have started all this to think well about everything. Does Srpska need a National Review like this, and even more developed and better? If it does, promises should be kept. If not, then something is seriously not right with their respect toward Srpska. 

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CONTENTS Panorama 04 Prologue 06 Chronicle

Road Sign 10 Album: Unforgetting 16 Freedom: A Centennial of the Battle on the Drina 26 Roads: On Zelengora, Through Naked Beauty 34 Nature: Empire of Birds in Šipovo 40 Old Crafts: Šargijas from Derventa 44 Revelations: Secret City in Mali Zvornik 50 Pilgrimages: Serbian Church in Zadar

Reading Book 58 History and legend: Pavle Bakić 64 Legends: Mato Glušac, Zduhać and Prophet 112 Fairytale: Vretenko, the Eighth Dwarf

Culture 70 Beacons: Špiro Bocarić 78 Traces: House of the Stojanović Family in Prijedor 84 Account: Childhood of Automobile Industry 90 Stage: “Orpheus in the Underground” of Banjaluka

People 94 Life, Novels: Aca Seltik, Musician 104 More than a Game: Uroš Petrović, Writer 116 Worlds: Ursula Yovich, Singer 122 The Winner: Nemanja Gordić

Introducing 128 Health: “Mer­kur”, Vrnjačka Banja 132 Connections: “M:tel”

Sponsor of the Publication:

Partners of the Publication:








NE WS S T RE AM >> Gala concert of the City Tamburica Orchestra of Banjaluka, which had been organized for ten years before the Serbian New Year, took place at the Cultural center of Banjaluka. The income from the sale of tickets is dedicated as assistance to the school of tambura. >> “Tell me Russia” is the name of the first open call for a short story organized by the Association of SerbianRussian Friendship “Brotherhood” from Banjaluka, in cooperation with the Embassy of Russia in B&H. The theme is free, and the open call lasts until March 25. >> I n 2014, the Student Theatre of Banjaluka was accepted into the International Association of University Theaters (AITU) and obtained a license to organize “Kestenburg” Festival, which will take place from July 31 to August 9, 2015. >> Women’s Orchestra of Auschwitz is the title of a lecture given recently in Banjaluka by Milijana Pavlović, a musicologist from the University of Innsbruck. She spoke about the establishment of this type of orchestra as a form of torture and one of the whims of the ideologists of concentration camps. >> Nenad Janković (Nele Karajlić), famous Serbian rock musician and author of the book Closing Time in Sarajevo, donated about two hundred books to the library in Doboj, in order to help this institution in its efforts to restore the collection of books after the last year’s destructive floods. The assistance was also announced by Matica srpska, National Library of Serbia and Library in Stara Pazova.


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Patriarch Pavle Exhibition dedicated to the late Serbian Patriarch Pavle, originally shown in the Museum of Serbian Orthodox Church in Belgrade, on the occasion of one hundredth anniversary of his birth and fifth anniversary of his death, will be opened in Bijelјina in early February. As announced by Vladimir Radovanović, head of the Museum of Serbian Orthodox Church, it is a part of the cooperation with the Secretariat for Religions of Srpska, within which valuables from the treasury of this museum will be exhibited more often throughout the Republic. “Opportunities exist and should be used. National treasure should be available to our people”, Radovanović says.

Documents on Suffering Year of suffering: 1942 is the title of documentary-historical exhibition mounted recently in the Museum of Kozara in Prijedor. Through heart-stirring documentary materials, the exhibition shows horrific mass suffering of Serbian ci-

vilians killed by Croatian state and its occupational military formations in the period of the offensive from July to October 1942, and especially killings of civilians in Veliko Palančište. The documents are from the legacy of Boško Baškot, courtesy of the Museum in Gradina, and the author of the exhibition is Vedrana Adamović.

A Stamp of the City Banjaluka: Important Women in the History of the City is the title of capital book of the team of authors consisting of Bilјana Panić Babić, Milena Karapetanović, Sanja Ljubišić, Ljilјana Potkonjak Panić and Želјko Savanović. It contains biographical data, stories, anecdotes and photographs of important women born in Banjaluka or otherwise connected to this city, from the Middle Ages top the present day. The book was recently officially presented at the National and University Library of Srpska.

Desnica the First The Springs of Ivan Galeb by Vladan Desnica will be the first book in the world published in 2015. Within the event “Literary Path of Santa Claus”, the book will be presented in the New Year’s Eve in front of the monument to Petar Kočić in the center of Banjaluka by writer Nikola Vukolić, the leader of “Petar Kočić” Endowment. This will continue the beautiful and unusual tradition that began in 2001. “The Procession of Santa Clauses” will take place before the promotion, which will include the laying of flowers on the monument to Kočić and poetry readings.

>> Films in “Kozara” Movie Theatre in Prijedor in 2014 were seen by 10,000 more visitors than in 2013. This is the result of modernization of the movie theatre and digitalization of its equipment. >> Almost three hundred youngest members of Cultural-Artistic Society “Alat” from Trebinje recently enchanted the audiences in its city by performing dances and songs from Herzegovina. >> Exhibition from the cycle Faces by Nataša Kragulј, a young and talented artist from Banjaluka, was presented in Gallery “Ori” in Berlin. >> The traditional Christmas concert was performed within “January Celebrations” in Foča, featuring ensembles and musicians of cultural-artistic societies “Vila” and “Foča”, ethnoband “Plavi neveni” and traditional gusle player Milorad Čančar. >> A six-member crew of rafters from Foča received an award of the city of Obrenovac for exceptional contribution in rescuing people during the May floods. >> Students of School of Music “Kornelije Stanković” from Bijelјina, Uglјevik and Graz performed a Christmas concert before the crowded auditorium of the Cultural center in Bijeljina. They also announced participation at an international competition in Slovakia. >> “Green Week”, an event organized by Foundation “Factory of Joy”, was an opportunity to present local food and beverages, natural products and handicrafts to the citizens of Banjaluka.

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NE WS S T RE AM >> In the first eleven months of 2014, Banjaluka was visited by 60,500 tourists, with 101,359 overnight stays, said the director of the city Tourist Organization Ostoja Barašin. The statistics are encouraging and they stimulate us “to keep working on improving the tools and manners of promotion of the tourist offers of the city”. >> C hristmas-New Year’s Tournament in foosball took place for the twenty first time in the city sports hall of Doboj. >> Association of film workers of Srpska welcomed the decision of the government to include in the budget for 2015 the item “Funds for film development” in the amount of 100,000 KM. This will enable many projects to enter co-production arrangements with European and Balkan funds.

Live Bridge “Days of Russian Culture” is the title of diverse event that took place recently in the Russian Cultural center in Banjaluka. Russian lectures, workshops, musical evenings and films attracted great attention in Srpska. This event also included presentations of “Alexander Nevsky” and the Club of Students of Russian language “Ana Ahmatova”. Together with the New Year’s performance, film The Irony of Fate directed by Eldar Ryazanov was also presented. The event was closed with lecture Rachmaninov, or About Supremacy of the Brilliant Spirit by Arsen Čarkić.

>> Veterans’ organization of the municipality of Brod will ask the local selfgovernment to change the name of Stadionska Street to Street of Slavko Lisica. The citizens of Brod think that this general of Serbian Army is the most deserving for the liberation of the municipality in the liberationhomeland war of the 1990’s. >> The free night seeing officially marked the opening of this year’s ski season in “Kozara” National Park. Prices remained at the level from the last year. >> “New Year’s Heart”, a humanitarian event by organization “Let’s Be Humans”, brought joy to almost two hundred children in Banjaluka and Doboj.


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Radio “Logos” In the Bishop’s Governorship of Brčko, within the Temple of St. Petka in Grčica, the first internet radio in the Diocese of Zvornik and Tuzla – The Orthodox Spiritual Radio “Logos” began to operate. With bishop’s blessing, this radio will focus on the life and spirituality of a modern man, especially young people, providing “logos god-man strongholds” and comfort, giving “road signs in this era with no clear directions”.

New Ski Center At the first stop of gondola “Jahorina Express”, the new ski center “Gornje Pale – Ravna planina” was officially opened. The slope is 1,200 meters long, and its peak can be reached by a lift with capacity of 800 skiers per hour. It meets all standards for organizing top quality competitions. It was symbolically opened by members of the national team of B&H

>> At the excursion site Zelenkovac near Mrkonjić Grad, a new auditorium, with sixty seats, was formally opened. It was reconstructed in ethno style, from the funds of Ecological Movement “Zelenkovac”. >> Annual concert of mixed choir of Cultural-Artistic Society “Una” was held recently in Novi Grad. The audience enjoyed the sacral and secular music of local and foreign composers.

in alpine skiing, Marko Šlјivić, Žana Novaković and Marko Rudić. The Ski Center is a part of the future gondola Pale– Jahorina and project “Ćiro” (narrow-gauge railroad that will connect Sarajevo and Pale).

New Ball, Old Elegance “The Vienna Ball”, one of the most important European cultural-humanitarian events, will arrive also in Banjaluka on February 14, 2015. It will take place in “Crystal Hall” of “Bosnia” Hotel and will gather a large number of people from public life, diplomacy, politics, economy, sports and the media. The plan is that this “Viennese combination of dance, sophistication, enjoyment and cultural content by the highest standards”, should become a tradition in this city on the Vrbas in the month of February.

>> Students of the Faculty of Law, University of Eastern Sarajevo, organized an evening of culture at the Center for Higher Education in Bijelјina. The program was organized as a competition, and appropriate awards were handed out. >> Cultural fund “Russian World” organized a poetry evening at Serbian Cultural Center in Modriča. This marked the first anniversary of the work of the Fund’s office in this city. >> Ivona Odicki, a student of Elementary School “Petar Kočić” from Prijedor, was the winner of the fourteenth Festival “Children Singing Hits”, which took place recently in Prijedor. >> Poetry encounter of writers from Foča and Višegrad, organized by the Society of Friends of Written Word “Most”, took place in Cultural Center in Višegrad. >> Dušanka Kužet, a poet and painter from Gradiška, a member of the Association of Writers of the Republic of Srpska and Serbia, who had published about ten books of poetry and fiction for children and adults, passed away recently at the age of 61.

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A l b u m

 Serbian positions on the Sava  Serbian soldiers in artillery position in Serbia. A small Serbian cemetery near Vizier’s Bridge in Albania

 Vasa Eškićević: Serbian army reaching the sea in Albania. Austro-Hungarian escape over the Sava





e, war volunteers, were giving our best, sacrificing our lives on the battlefields. The following day, many will be killed again in the battles. But there will be wars afterwards as well. You, the young, schoolboys, pupils, when you get old enough for war and fight, maybe for some ideas different from ours, take in your hearts the self-denial of volunteers. And do not forget us.” That is what Milan Vakanjac, Serbian officer-volunteer, wrote at the Thessaloniki Front, in a difficult moment before the decisive Serbian attack, on a paper torn from a notebook. This records, together with his other notes from the war, was later published in the book Do Not Forget Us. The title of this book was taken as the title of the exhibition that marked this fall in the Gallery of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts in Belgrade. Thanks to the cooperation between the Gallery of SANU and the Museum of Novi Sad, National Museum in Šabac and Military Museum in Belgrade, the works of Serbian war photographer Risto Marjanović and war painter Vasa Eškićević were presented to the public: 60 photographs, 25 paintings and 81 sketches. Both authors were direct participants. Both returned to Serbia immediately after the outbreak of World War One and made themselves available to the Serbian military headquarters. Eškićević, originally from Irig, came from Russia after twenty years and impeccable career. Risto Marjanović, originally from Šabac, worked in Paris as an editor for illustration of New York Herald for Europe. What they left to us from those difficult years is precious, “true Serbian illustrated history of the Great War.” We will share a piece of this with our readers, for eternal memory of all heroes and martyrs killed for the Homeland. Memory is only a crumb of what we owe to them .  (B. M.)

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F r e e d o m

A view from Gučevo on the valley of the Drina


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The amazing heroism is the eternal measure and fate of defenders of Serbia. The Battle of Drina is one of the bloodiest and most incredible ones in World War I. In difficult circumstances, lacking ammunition and equipment, Serbian warriors held off 215.000 Austro-Hungarians for two months, without rest or shifts. In five days of the almost mythical drama on Mačkov Kamen, more than 8.000 Serbs and about 30.000 Austro-Hungarians were killed. And each chapter of the Battle of Gučevo, from the distance between the battle lines to the way of providing supplies and communication, has forever become part of anthologies of warfare

Text and photo: Nenad Marković

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 Monument to Serbian soldiers on Gučevo, above Banja Kovilјača


he achievements of the Serbian army in World War I have always deeply struck me – says Richard Carl (81), retired colonel of the American army, former professor of military history at West Point, while walking in Gučevo, the mountain where bitter fights took place a hundred years ago, famous as the Battle above the Clouds. – It is a great story only a few know about, about the fight and magnificent victory of a small nation. What Serbia accomplished then, what her soldiers-peasants achieved fighting without equipment and ammunition, with love for their homeland and people, defending their homes with their lives, should be known. As a soldier, I can understand the soldier’s soul, and here I found the one that made a peasant become a soldier. In order to win a war, one must be a good man. You made that happen. The bloodiest battles of the Serbian army in World War I took place within the Battle of Drina, especially in Gučevo above Banja Koviljača and Mačkov Kamen near Krupanj. Serbian allies were doing badly, the enemy was marching towards Paris, Russians were suffering losses in Galicia. Serbia was therefore requested to conduct an offensive against Austro-Hungary, so that its troops would remain in this area. Fulfilling the requests, the Serbian army moved to Srem on September 5 and achieved significant successes. Meanwhile, the commander of the Austro-Hungarian forces in the Balkans Oscar von Potiorek decided to begin the second invasion into Serbia on the Drina, thereby stopping the Serbian offensive and moving towards Valjevo. The Fifth and the Sixth Army started across the Drina in the night between September 7 and 8, to confront the Second and Third Serbian Army. Standing before 215 thousand Austro-Hungarians with 500 cannons and 400 machineguns were 200 thousand Serbian soldiers with 306 cannons, 114 machineguns and lack of ammunition. The bloody battle begins. In order to advance towards Valjevo, the enemy had to conquer Gučevo and its ridges. In the first twenty-odd days, they suffered big losses, without fulfilling the plan. Near the end of September, the front stabilizes, the armies make burrows in conquered positions and the exhausting trench warfare begins. The most severe fights took place in Eminove Vode and Kulište, defended by the strengthened Combined Division. SRPSK A  БРОЈ 8-9  2014

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The Prince and the Painter During the battle, Serbian regiments conducted fifteen attacks on Mačkov Kamen, as well as numerous counterattacks and attacks of lower-rank units in other parts of the battlefield. Prince Đorđe, son of King Peter I, led the last attack of the 5th Supernumerary Regiment after its commander was killed. Holding a revolver in one and a sabre in his other hand, the brave prince jumped out of the trench commanding: “Charge, brave ones! Follow me! I am the son of your king!” The prince was soon shot and became the first patient of nurse Nadežda Petrović, famous Serbian painter.

While the aggressor forces were regularly shifted, the 6th Supernumerary Regiment endured the entire battle in Eminove Vode without any shifts. Even today, the Gučevo woods hide trenches and craters, traces of the horrible battle. In the autumn of 1914, the mountain was almost bare from the fire effects. If one looks carefully, he may find rusted shells, broken bayonets, parts of guns, buttons and uniform buckles. The glade with the memorial ossuary dedicated to the heroes of Gučevo has a view over the Bosnian mountain, the winding Drina and Loznica in the valley. Clouds silently move through the trees, like the spirits of heroes who left their lives here, in this mountain – the boundary stone, defending Serbia. ON THAT STONE OF THE SERBIAN LAND During the severe fights on Gučevo, the Serbian Supreme Command orders the First Army, withdrawn from Srem, to prevent the enemy invasion over the Sokolske Mountain. Already on September 17, Serbian forces advance to Mačkov Kamen, and conquer it two days later. The pursuit of the decimated 16th Corps is disturbed by the dark night and thick fog, which enabled the Austro-Hungarians to rearrange their troops and reestablish a ring. When the fog rose, the soldiers started fighting hand-tohand on Mačkov Kamen and Košutnja Stopa. In the following days, until September 22, the slopes of Jagodnja were alternately in the hands of the Serbian army and of the enemy forces, in a long series of bloody fights. The highest plateau, which spanned about 500 square meters, was completely covered with dead bodies. The Battle of Mačkov Kamen is also known as the “officers’ battle”, because of SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 A centennial: Honoring the shadows of heroes on Mačkov kamen, last fall


F r e e d o m  Guard unit of the Serbian army on Mačkov kamen, 2014

great losses in the Serbian officers’ staff. Officers, charging as leaders of their units, gave an example with their heroism of how one should fight for freedom. As many as 115 of them never returned from the battlefield and 176 were wounded. Many units were left without officers. Majors and captains took over command over regiments, lieutenants and sub-lieutenants over battalions, sergeants over troops. Austro-Hungarian commanders informed that the defense of Serbian officers is incredible and their charges remarkably daring. According to Austro-Hungarian reports, the fights in Mačkov Kamen were fiercer than all previous ones, while their historians noted that it was the bloodiest battle in their entire invasion on Serbia. After taking over Serbian positions on September 22, Potiorek ordered moving into defensive position. It was such a battle that he no longer had the strength to continue the attack, which enabled the Serbian army to withdraw undisturbed. At the very battlefield, according to Austro-Hungarian sources, there were two thousand dead soldiers, thereof 800 Serbs. Their lists also state how many bodies were found as a whole, while numerous ones were torn by horrible artillery fire. Austro-Hungarians did not even refrain from firing at soldiers of both sides during their hand-to-hand combats. The “dum-dum” bullets, which the enemy used abundantly, also made terrible losses among the Serbian forces. The Battle of Mačkov Kamen caused the death of more than 8.000 Serbs and about 30.000 Austro-Hungarians. NEVER SEEN BEFORE The bloody fights in Mačkov Kamen did not bring rest to the fighters in Gučevo. Serbs tried to neutralize the actions of the superior enemy artillery by getting as close as possible to the Austro-Hungar-

Treacherous Attack Not far from Mačkov Kamen, there is a place from which wounded Serbian soldiers were transported to Krupanj. In the moment more than 70 of them were waiting for the horse carts to start off, Austro-Hungarians noticed them and opened artillery fire. Paramedic Milutinović, who survived the treacherous attack, raised a monument in the form of a cross there, to honor his comrades.


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ian trenches. In some places, the sides in conflict were only about ten meters from each other. – In order to destroy the Austro-Hungarian machinegun nests, Serbian soldiers dug a tunnel leading to the Austro-Hungarian trenches. Miners from Veles were digging so that a hunched soldier could pull a crate of dynamite. The passageway was dug between two enemy nests, then forked. When the explosive was activated, enormous quantities of soil and stone went up into the sky, while blown up soldiers in blue uniforms could be seen above

the cloud of smoke. The explosion was so forceful, that the soil also fell over Serbian trenches and covered 20 people. Six of them managed to save themselves. Craters can be seen on the mountain even today – tells Žarko Ćosović from the “Battle of Drina” Memorial Gallery in Banja Koviljača. He also reminds of the story about the hunter whose dog started digging in Gučevo. The hunter then noticed a bayonet sticking from the ground and dug out a skeleton of a Serbian soldier. In a semi-upright position, with a gun in his hand, he was covered with soil and thus remained on eternal

guard. There were so many dead people left scattered in this beautiful mountain, that, decades after the war, shepherds were discovering skulls and bones. After visiting Loznica and Gučevo, John Reed, New York Magazine reporter, wrote in his book War in Serbia 1915: “Serbian trenches were on one side of this open space, Austrian on the other. There was hardly ten meters between them. Both trenches were joining into enormous pits here and there, about a dozen meters in diameter and about fifteen deep, in places where the enemy was blown up with dynaSRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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mite. Taking a better look, we saw a horrible thing: pieces of uniform, skulls with matted hair, from which rags of flesh were still hanging, bones with rotten hands at their end, bloody bones sticking out of military boots, were all jutting out of these mounds of dirt. A terrible smell was hovering over the entire area. Packs of semiwild dogs ran away to the edge of the forest... We were walking over the dead. There


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were so many of them, that sometimes our feet would fall into pits of rotten meat, crushing the bones. Holes would suddenly open, with gray maggots swarming over them. Most bodies were covered only with a thin layer of dirt, partially washed down by rain, while many were not buried at all. Numerous Austrians were laying as they fell in their desperate attack, packed on the ground in a position of full movement.”

those with horrible blasting, rifle grenades, exploding bullets, smoke and gas grenades. On the other hand, Serbs were short in ammunition and equipment. In his book Battle above the Clouds, Branimir Ginić writes about the ingenuity of the Serbian soldiers in such circumstances. “Commander of the 5th Supernumerary Regiment Nikolajević issues an order: ‘Pay attention to the enormous spending of ammunition. I order to stop aimless wasting of ammunition. Undertake measures that good soldiers continue shooting, thereby letting the enemy know that we have not languished.’ In order to compensate the lack of ammunition, they used rattles. These shots of false machineguns provoked a strong reaction and nervousness of the enemy. They were made of wooden cylinders, but so perfect in their imitation of real machineguns, that even the most experienced ear could not differentiate them from genuine shots. Rattles were used in close-quarter fighting, with the objective to trick the enemy in their estimation of the number of machineguns and expand the enemy fire towards false machinegun nests. Thus the defenders of Gučevo succeeded in competing with the superior enemy for a long time.” Serbian soldiers also found ways to inform the command about the situation in the frontline. They wrote messages on empty ammunition cases tin, then lit a candle and raised the cases with a stick. The messages could be read from more than a 200 meter distance. After almost two months of resisting, the heroic fight of the Serbian army in Gučevo ended on November 6, at dawn. Exhausted defenders had to withdraw. However, the Battle of Drina, especially the horrific combats on Mačkov Kamen and Gučevo, enabled the counterstrikes which were about to take place. Serbia greeted the end of 1914 free, without a single enemy soldier in its territory.  FOR THE STRENGTH OF THE FUTURE UPHEAVAL Serbian soldiers saw the new weapons of the enemy for the first time in Gučevo, which often provoked horror in experienced fighters. It was difficult to remain calm while light rockets burned above their heads, while they were shot with perfidious weapons with pneumatic pressure or

 Honorary guard in front of the warrior memorial-charnel house on Gučevo

Commerce in the Trenches Austro-Hungarian troops had ammunition and equipment, however lacked food, which was difficult to supply over the fiery Drina (Serbian artillery destroyed bridges). On the other side, Serbs had food, but were short in everything else. Unusual commercial activities thus developed in Eminove Vode, where the trenches were closest to one another. Our soldiers exchanged two loafs of bread for a pair of shoes from the Austro-Hungarians. First Serbs would throw one loaf and, when the shoes would fly from the other side, they would send the other.

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P a t h s


That Tear in the

Mountain Eye Text and photo: Radmila Đević


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Unrealistically beautiful landscapes of this mountain are known to those who know about them, although the roads are unpaved, and it is not easy to find accommodation in the mountain lodges. It is even more difficult to say whether the lake is Orlovačko or Kotlaničko, Štirinsko or Borilovačko, Black or White. Whether narcissuses or blueberries are more enchanting. The true trekking lovers will not hesitate. An the Mountaineering Association of Srpska and Tourist Organization of Foča will help them

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P a t h s  Old mountain lodge Videž The Donje Bare Lake

 Pastures near the peaks of Zelengora



ight blue lakes, “mountain eyes”, the unique color scheme, slopes covered with medicinal herbs that “bring back from the dead”, centuries old tree trunks branching out into the sky, refreshing springs of ice-cold water and intoxicating currents of mountain air, crickets and butterflies, everybody with the story of their own... The treasure of the mountain of Zelengora, over 2,000 meters high and stretching over 150 square kilometers, made it the last summer again one of the most attractive tourist destinations in the Balkans, favorite destination of mountaineers, explorers, adventure lovers. No, it is not an ordinary mountain. You should come and see for yourself. And it can be reached from seven directions, unpaved roads. From the south, Zelengora is bordered with the Neretva River, from the west with the mountains of Husada and Radomišlјa, from the north with Vrbnička River and Maluša mountains. Its eastern border is the Sutjeska River. It is much different from Maglić, the highest peak of Bosnia and Herzegovina, from which it is only divided by the Sutjeska River. One of the roads that reach Zelengora leads through Maglić. The other is from the direction of Kalinovik, the third (twenty kilometers long) from Tjentište. At the Čemerno saddle, on Beograd–Foča– Tjentište–Trebinje road, there is an exit that leads you after fifty kilometers to the very heart of the mountain. Numerous pedestrian paths will lead you to the plateau with several sharp reefs, and only one to the highest point of Ze-

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The Lakes Eight “blue mountain eyes” give special charm to this mountain: lakes of Upper and Lower Bare, Orlovačko, Kotlaničko, Štirinsko, Borilovačko, Black and White Lake. They have been known for a long time, but they always reveal themselves differently. On the shore of the Lower Bare Lake there is a mountain lodge, which can be rented, but also numerous developed areas for excursions. On this lake, in some other times, Josip Broz Tito often used to tome to rest.

lengora, the peak of Bregoč (2,015 meters). It is not easy to enjoy this beauty. One needs wit and strength, boldness and persistence. These paths have not been introduced to each other yet, and let alone to newcomers and pilgrims. And when you start and get deep into it, you will soon not be sure whether you are on the “mountain of the Grail” or on excursion. You will see before you a landscape in which the nature stood against ordinariness and calculability, and scattered its artworks all over. First it will mesmerize you, then refresh feed and cure you. If you give it time, it will erase your scars as well. For all those who manage to feel its pulse. FOLLOWING THE TRAIL OF NARCISSUS AND BLUEBERRY – One of the most beautiful and most interesting mountains in the Dinaric system, Zelengora attracts many people from Srpska, Serbia, Montenegro, and the world. One does not have to be an experienced mountaineer here, or prone to adventures. One can enjoy long beautiful walks over spacious valleys, camp, fish, hunt, swim in the lake... There are also mountain lodges for rent. In addition to numerous tourists, this place is also frequented by scientific researchers from the European Union – Ljeposava Đajić, director of the Tourist Organization of Foča Municipality says. Every year, hundreds mountaineers from all over participate in the event “Lakes of Zelengora”, which is organized by the mountaineering association from Foča named after the mountain. – Every summer, within the event “Lakes of Zelengora”, we have two excursions: “Narcissus Harvest” and “Blueberry

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Days”. The event lasts four days, and as many as three hundred visitors come from different cities and all southern Slavic countries – Maja Plјevalјčić, secretary of Mountaineering Association “Zelengora” says. – Our mountain is truly a jewel of nature. Those who visit it once keep coming back to it. This Green Mountain, undoubtedly, is the main mountain destination of this part of Srpska, and beyond. – Our mountains are still insufficiently known beyond the borders of their region. We are here to change this – Blagota Marković, president of the Mountaineering Association of Srpska, says. – Zelengora, certainly one of the more attractive mountain ranges in Srpska, is perfect for mountaineering, attractive for vacation, motorcycling, cycling, different types of tourism. Mountaineers, travelers, lovers come all year long, from all surrounding countries. In order to raise this visit to a higher level in winter time as well, we must get more organized, work on infrastructure and renovation of mountain lodges, on snow slopes. This year we are also preparing a mountaineering gathering with colleagues from Serbia, in order to exchange experience, define common goals and projects. When we join forces, we can accomplish more and better. HEADING And I became familiar with this are and these people even before – Goran Savić, a member of Mountaineering Club “Želјezničar” from Belgrade says. He has been visiting the mountains of Foča for years. – The beauty of nature here is astounding. I want to get to know it as much as possible and feel it as completely as possible. On Zelengora we also meet people from Mountaineering Club “Javorak” from Paraćin. – This area clearly speaks for itself. Zelengora is truly the queen of the mountains –Igor Stefanović from Paraćin says. And Bogdana Angelova, from Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria: – Zelengora is beautiful. In Bulgaria we also have blueberries, but those we have tasted on this mountain are like nowhere else. Those who know well the tempers of this mountain tell us how it can best be conquered. – One must carry mountaineering equipment, mountaineering shoes, backpacks, water, extra clothes for changing – says Milo-

van Milanović, a retired teacher from Foča, a frequent pilgrim here. – This mountain is like a natural pharmacy, it is covered with St. John’s Wort, yarrow, bitter herbs that heal numerous disorders. There are also blueberries, used by some people as a medicine, and as refreshment for others. In 2013, some scenes of the film On the Milky Way by famous Serbian director Emir Kusturica were shot here. The film diva Monica Bellucci stayed here on this occasion. – It is my first time here – she said. – I am very excited, because this is a wonderful, magical place. Magical. Kusturica stands beside, smiling. – We are shooting the last scene. In the center of the story is Kosta, his dream of marriage has come true. He meets a woman in heaven, they jump together into the water, dive through it, they are happy, and then she turns into a butterfly – he reveled to us. All this on Zelengora really looks like a high budget film, the scenery is dream-like. A day passes in an instant. On many sites one can see beautiful examples of tombs. Those in the vicinity of the Štirinsko Lake, on Ljuba’s Grave, and Lučke kolibe are the most interesting. There is so much more. Don’t take our word for it. You have been invited by Zelengora itself. 

 Reading the stone: Tombs on Zelengora

 A view from Zelengora The Borilovačko Lake

Green Nomads Around the green mountain, a bell is heard of the leader of the herds that live with their mountain around the mountain lodges. Shepherds-nomads, the best guardians of the green mountain, stay on it slopes from May to October. Their dairy products are manufactured after original old recipes. They always have a lot of work, but they will never fail to be friendly. Mountain lodges can be found in Zavidež, Stari katun, Potklek, Trebova, Vita bara.

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On a viewpoint above Gornje Bare

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Bird watching is one of fastest growing types of eco-tourism in the world, with annual increase in income of as much as 115 percent. And in Šipovo, according to the ongoing explorations. The number of recorded species will exceed two hundred. Many of them are important, rare and endangered in continental scale. This undoubtedly represents a great economic and tourist potential of this part of Srpska



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Photographs: Archive of the TORS, TO Šipovo, Goran Topić

he area of Šipovo is abundant in exceptional natural and cultural treasures. The natural attractions of this area constitute the basis for tourist products that make this area stand out on the tourist map of Srpska. One of the specificities of geographical position of Šipovo is that it is situated in a part of Adriatic migration corridor between the Sava River Valley on the north (with which it is connected via the canyon of the Vrbas River and the Pliva Lakes), and karst fields in the south (Glamočko, Kupreško, Livanjsko, Duvanjsko), well known as traditional resting

Species In the area of Šipovo there are many species that are rare in the entire Europe. For example, the western capercaillie (Tetrao urogallus), hazel hen (Bonasa bonasia), golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), short-toed snake eagle (Circaetus gallicus), Montagu’s harrier (Circus pygargus), peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus), eagle-owl (Bubo bubo), Ural owl (Strix uralensis), Eurasian pygmy owl (Glaucidium passerinum), boreal owl (Aegolius funereus), three-toed woodpecker (Picoides tridactylus), greyheaded woodpecker (Picus canus), lesser grey shrike (Lanius minor), alpine chough (Pyrrhocorax graculus), alpine accentor (Prunella collaris)..


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places and transit zones for a large number of different bird species. Exactly for this reason Šipovo is a real ornithology heaven which will, we are sure, get its righteous place in the future among the lovers of this specialized form of tourism. If we add to this the offer of rural tourism in Šipovo, mountaineering, cycling, photo safari, fly fishing, and of course the excellent culinary offer of local specialties from this region, all nature lovers will find a place for themselves here. This type of offer for bird watchers is getting increasingly popular. It includes visits to the sites, bird watching and taking photos. Today it is the fastest growing type of eco-tourism in the world, with annual increase in income of as much as 115 percent. Protection of endangered bird species, their habitats and development of eco-tourism in protected areas, in addition to improving the tourist offer, also brings significant income for the local community. The secondary industries and the existing tourist facilities, as well as development and construction of new ones, open up the space for a serious eco-tourist concept. Members of the Society for Exploration and Protection of Biodiversity from Ban-

jaluka are dedicated mostly to exploration of Šipovo area and its birds. – In addition to birds, there is little data on exploration of the flora and fauna of this area – says Goran Topić. – The first studies of the birds of Šipovo are those conducted in the 19th century by Otmar Rajzer. These were followed by the second period of insufficient research. In 2005, the first contemporary explorations of birds were initiated and they have been lasting up to present day. During this period, a total of 179 bird species have been registered in the area of Šipovo. This number represents an approximately realistic picture, because some bird species have not yet been recorded in the explored area. With further explorations of forest habitats in the surrounding mountains, as well as habitats in river valleys, it is possible to expect that the number of species will exceed 200, which would place Šipovo among several areas of Srpska and this part of the Balkans with the most bird species. FOUR UNITS FOR ABUNDANCE – Taking into account the increasing global significance of eco-tourism and sus-

tainable development in the overall tourist offer, certainly much more attention should be dedicated to the development of bird watching in the area of Šipovo. This area has exceptional potentials for this – as Maja Đorđević, also a member of this Society, pointed out. – There are currently four ornithology-fauna units that can be identified in the area of Šipovo: valleys of the rivers of Pliva, Janja, Sokočnica, Lubovica and Volarica, hill-mountain belt with Janjska and Dragnjićka plateaus, mountainous forest belt and high mountain belt. Thanks to them, this area is abundant in important bird species. Because of the presence of species that are rare and endangered on international and local level, as well as because of preserved habitats, some sites of Šipovo deserve serious legal protection. For now, only Rainforest Reserve Janj has such protection – our interlocutors say. – Unspoiled nature, clear creaks and mountain rivers, clean air and spring water, traditional local cuisine and friendly hosts, preserved forest habitats and great diversity of birds, with a presence of rare species, certainly represent a great economic potential of Šipovo.  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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Šargija Says

Experience and love of several generations are interwoven in it. Slavko has been making instruments since 1962. He has been making šargijas from maple, cherry and willow trees. Violins only from maple, the hardest one. Orders used to come from all over, and now, he says, there are less and less those who are buying šargijas and violins. And there are even fewer maestros who play on them. But his grandchildren are coming to the workshop more often. They would like to make, to play. There is hope

By: Igor Despotović


here are hardly any lovers of original music of the Sava River valley area who have not heard of Slavko Marković from Derventa. For more than a half a century his skillful hands have been making šargija, and only those that will, as he says, produce the original, traditional sound. he also manufactures violins, and he has made several violas and flutes. The master from the village of Živinice near Derventa made his first šargija when he was only eleven years old. By then, he had been able to perfectly play this demanding instrument. The fact that he was a master already then is reflected in the fact that he immediately sold his first šargija, “for a good price”, in Novo Selo near Brod, to the original band “Brothers Čabraje”. It was in 1962. he doesn’t know how many instruments he has made since then. he only knows that it is about “a few hundred šargijas and a few dozen violins”.

and Zlatko are also exceptional musicians. Stanoje was also making good šargijas, and it was from him that Slavko learned all the secrets of this trade. – Father started making šargijas after World War Two. he was given one, and on the basis of that one he started making others. First I helped my father to make šargijas, and then he taught me. Father would first cut the belly a little, makes a hole, mark the limit up to which I can work on it, so as not to break it, and when I finish this he would continue thinning it. Little by little, I started working on my own – he remembers. He made his first “double-neck” (a šargija with two necks) in 1981. It is still kept by his brother even today. As accompaniment to šargija, violins appear in Derventa area in the mid 1950’s. – I have always loved violin, and I was taught how to play it by my neighbor Ilija Škoro, who was a young man at that time. he



Slavko is not in this by accident. He is a son of the famous šargija player Stanoje Marković, who played for years with original band “Brothers Begići”, with which he recorded several albums. Stojan passed this love for music to his children, so there is no member of Marković family who cannot sing or play. Slavko’s brothers Marko, Mile

Parts of a šargija are kutla (belly), neck (fingerboard), four or five pegs and an additional small peg (konjićak), four wires and perde (frets). In the past, goat’s intestine was used instead of wire. – Length of the belly is typically 52 centimeters, width is 30, and depth up to 25 centimeters, although instruments can be bigger and smaller. The belly is made the first, and other parts are added later – Slavko Marković explains.

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played so well that the entire village would stop to listen to him. Father sold two cows and went to Novi Sad to buy from one lady a violin that had been identified as a “Stradivarius”. Unfortunately, he soon had to sell it, because he could not make any money by playing on it – Slavko remembers. He adds that after this his father was given a violin from a man from the place where Slavko had sold his first šargija. – I kept it and took care of it. It was also repaired. Later, it was not possible to play on it at all, so I purchased and ordered from Czech Republic, but none of them was producing sufficiently good sound. I decided to make myself the first violin and I made the first one in 1977. The violin that was given to Stanoje as a gift long time ago is still standing in Slavko’s workshop, only in its constituent parts. BEAUTY OF THE INSTRUMENT AND BEAUTY OF THE SOUND Slavko Marković is still manufacturing šargijas and violins in his village, in an old outbuilding on his family estate. – It takes four-five days to make one šargija, depending on how much you want to make it beautiful. I am not looking for the beauty of the instrument, but primarily beauty of the sound, so that it produces beautiful sound. I make them of maple, cherry or willow tree. My father recorded all

The Sava River Valley Embroidery Šargija is today mostly played together with violin. – It is mostly used to play our kolo music, such as “Bruđa”, “Keler” or “The Sava River Valley Embroidery”, which connects as many as seven kolo pieces – Slavko Marković says.


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of his records by playing on a šargija made of willow tree. I have one of his šargijas. he used to make them with a little smaller belly, and today they are making it with a bigger belly, to make it as loud as possible. For the construction of a good quality violin one needs twenty das at the average, even one month. – I make violins only of maple tree. There are six types of maple trees, and violins are made only of the hardest one, because it has good acoustics – Slavko explains. He made his first viola in the early 1980’s and sold it in Sarajevo. – It was a man who graduated from a school of music. He wanted to buy it, but didn’t have enough money, and we made some kind of arrangement. It was not unusual that I sell a violin or šargija for a low price if I see that someone loves music a lot and really wants to have the instrument. Almost all performers of original music of Derventa area have my violins and šargijas. Buyers used to come from all over, and now, he says, there are less and less of those who are buying violins and šargijas. – There are many people today who are involved in manufacturing and selling šargijas, but there are few good quality instruments. It is also difficult to find a good šargija player. If both the instrument and the player are good, one can make magic with šargija. The sounds of this unique instrument can be truly beautiful. Unfortunately, just like in many other things, there are many of those who play but are not exceptional musicians. That is why many people have wrong impression about this instrument, a bad one. Slavko is currently not playing in public, but will gladly show his skill to his guests or at various ceremonies. – Until a few years ago I used to play šargija and violin at the Cultural-Artistic Centre for Youth “Bosilјak”. I played in their performances for seven-eight years –Slavko says. There are still young people interested in making and primarily playing šargija. – Here, my grandchildren, although still very young, keep coming to the workshop, observe, want to play. I hope not only that both the original music and šargija will be preserved, but that there will be more and more of those who want to play. Our music is true richness and it would be great misfortune not to preserve that treasure. 

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below the Mountain

Intended for longer stay of high government officials in difficult war conditions, it was built in strictest secrecy. So strict that even Germans, during four years of occupation, did not discover it. It stretches over 5,000 square meters, has a kilometer and a half of hallways, conditions for the placement of more than 3,000 people. Among seventy five rooms there are apartments for the king and his family, members of the government and the General Staff, dormitory for the guard, chapel, library, cantina, bathrooms, well, horse stalls... It was used in accordance with its purpose only for three days in April 1941. Today, eighty years later, someone finally had an idea to do something smart with it Text and photographs: Nebojša Marković

The Bridge of King Aleksandar, built in 1929


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D i s c o v e r y  Main entrance into the underground city, today’s look Area of a former chapel in the underground city, with a place for the altar


he last time that a foot of a Serbian, Yugoslav king walked around Serbia was in the spring of 1941, on the banks of the Drina in Mali Zvornik. While Wehrmacht units around the country were easily breaking the resistance of Yugoslav Royal Army, on April 12, young king Petar II Karađorđević crossed over to Bosnia, over the bridge the construction of which had been helped by his father Aleksandar I (after whim the bridge was named). From there, Petar II went to Nikšić and further into exile, from where he never returned. Three days before that, the king spent in the secret underground city created in the guts of the mountain of Boranje. Military strategists of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia thought that, in case of war, geographical center of the country would be the perfect place for the placement of the general staff, and that is exactly the area around Mali Zvornik. Searching for an appropriate location, they determined that the hollow rocks in the slopes of Boranje had everything that was necessary to take over that role. Works on the construction of a war shelter, built under the code “Stone Girl”, began in 1932, and were finalized, before actual completion, in the fall of 1934, after the killing of King Aleksandar in Marseille. One third of the structure remained unfinished. The structure occupies a surface area of about 5,000 square meters, it has hallways in total length of about a kilometer and a half, and 75 rooms. In the underground city there was room for more than 3,000 people, the king, his entourage, government and guards. The depth of the mountain was hiding the apartments intended for the placement of the king, his family, members of the government and military leadership, but also dormitory

King’s Bridge Vožd Karađorđe, according to the account, swore to bridge the Drina, and his vow was fulfilled by his great-grandson, King Aleksandar I. The solution for the iron bridge in Zvornik was adopted in 1926, the works began in 1927, and the river was bridged in 1929. The bridge, about 150 meters long and about seven meters wide, was formally opened on January 12, 1930, and carried the name of the king. Its strength was tested for half a month with 30,000 tons of transported rocks. It was demolished on April 14, 1941, in order to slow down the advancement of the enemy. It was restored in 1946, and was named “Filip Klјajić Fića”, after a partisan war hero, and its original name was restored early this century. This iron old man is today in poor condition and is used only as a pedestrian bridge, the shortest connection between two namesake cities.


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for the guard, chapel, library, canteen, horse stalls and other purpose rooms. On the very end of the unfinished structure, there is a well with fresh drinking water, covered with a concrete lid. It was supposed to ensure that the tenants of the city are not thirsty when the massive metal door gets closed, hiding them from the world. According to unsubstantiated stories, the main architect was a Russian, expert for mine excavation, and that the works were conducted by prisoners who were transported there during the night. They didn’t even know where they were, or what they were making. According to stories, only five people knew about this city, i.e. about its purpose: the king, prime minister, ministers of finance and defense, and the Chief of Staff. KING’S LAST DAYS IN SERBIA The city had twelve entrances closed by massive doors. A few of them are still visible today from the major road that stretches between the mountain and the river. Temperature inside is stable, between 14 and 16 degrees, and is not influenced by the seasons and external weather conditions. At the end of every right hallway, a small beam of light passes through ventilation openings. Along the concrete vaults, just like in unfinished rooms with bare rock, cave jewelry has begun to be created on the ceilings. These, still small and thin stalactites complement the beauty and mysticism of the structure. Along the hallway there are still fans that served for ventilation of the city, and are now rusted. One of the last sessions of the royal government took place in the biggest room, and not far from it there are apartments in which the young king spent his last nights in Serbia. The chapel is especially interesting. Painted in white, just like other rooms, it is the only one that had painted ornaments toward the top, and on the eastern wall there is a niche for the altar. There is no reliable data on the origin of the “Stone Girl”. The underground city was kept as the biggest secret and documents on its construction, if there were any, have not been found. Historical facts about the king’s stay there during the April War are known, and not much else. Elderly people from Mali Zvornik used to say that the Germans during the occupation did not find out about the existence of the secret city and never stepped into it. After the war, the city was of no interest to anyone. At first, it was used

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 Vojislav Stamenković, Director of the Tourist organization of Mali Zvornik, one of the initiators of restoration of the “Stone Girl”

for the storing of medications of a pharmaceutical company, then for warehousing of beverages. Then it was forgotten. Not far from the iron Bridge of King Aleksandar, there is one of many entrances into the city, and a little farther away a church in the rock. Together with the chapel in the guts of the “Stone Girl”, it was another place for prayer of the underground city. The church itself is not connected with the city and entrance into it is from the major road Loznica–Ljubovija. It was neglected for a long time, and when the times changed, it was brought back to life. After cleaning and restoring the interior, it was determined that it had been built in the shape of a cross with 33 meters long arms, which symbolizes the age of Christ. Interestingly, its construction began in 1933.

Treasure, Holes and Bats In certain rooms of the underground city in Mali Zvornik, next to the walls there are holes in the floor that were, it is thought, dug out by the communist OZN-a, after the war, in search for the king’s treasure. Hollows in the rock are visible in the part that the builders did not have time to fill with concrete and so make rooms. Until the recent weather conditions, the city was inhabited by numerous colonies of bats.


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Near the entrance into the church, water springs from the rock. They say that young Petar used to wash his face on this spring, near the guardsmen, every morning during his short stay there. At the entrance into this temple in the cave, there are currently works in progress, after which it will look like a smaller Church of the Holy Cross in Ostrog. A bell tower with a cross dedicated to those killed on the Drina is planned to be mounted on the rock above the door. BUNKERS ON BANJA KOVILJAČA These are not the only underground structures of the Karađorđević dynasty in the Drina River basin. In Banja Kovilјača, near Loznica, in the guts of the mountain of Gučevo, there are seven bunkers that were intended for placement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. There was a plan, the story goes, to cut out the road through the mountain, which would connect the two shelters. The bunkers in Banja are located along the road above villas “Dalmacija” and “Herzegovina”, from which the concrete bridges lead right to two entrances in the guts of the mountain. In this way, in case of danger, it was possible to quickly find safe shelter. The

slope was covered with thick pine forest, and the shelters made of thick reinforced concrete could not be seen from the air. These bunkers are even more mysterious, because it is not known when exactly they were built. According to some accounts of elderly local people, the construction began at the time of completion of the iron bridge in Mali Zvornik, in 1929, while others claim that they were built between 1938 and 1940. It is known, however, that General Dušan Simović, prime minister and the Chief of Staff, arrived in Kovilјača on the first day of the April War, and that the decree of King Petar I about the attack on the country was issued here. From here, the general staff withdrew before the invading enemy toward the underground city in Mali Zvornik and from there into exile. These bunkers of Banja are today in a poor condition and it is unknown what they are hiding in the depths. If enough funds were invested in their exploration and development, they could become an important tourist curiosity. On the other hand, the “Stone Girl” has already revealed herself to tourists and has occasionally received visitors in the past three years. Vojislav Stamenković, direc-

tor of the Tourist Organization of Mali Zvornik, says that it took two years only to register the underground city as a property of the municipality and to hand it over to it for management. Its reconstruction is no finally possible and the works have already begun. According to Stamenković, the idea is to develop one third of the “Stone Girl” as a contemporary museum exhibition, and to lease out the rest for certain appropriate purposes, which would secure funds for maintenance and further development of the city. One of the ideas is to organize weddings in the underground chapel , and to develop apartments for overnight stays. Certain scenes of TV series Ravna gora by Radoš Bajić were shot in the underground city of the Karađorđević dynasty and this, according to Stamenković, helped in determining what certain things looked like at that time. When the city is developed, everything will be furnished in the same way as it was at the beginning of the war. Eight decades after construction had been suspended, the secret underground city of king Aleksandar, who was used for its purpose only for three days, could be given a new life and become an important place in the tourist map of Serbia.  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 Restoration: Temple in a rock, near the underground city


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P i l g r i ma g e s

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Treasury Filled with Hope This Christian Orthodox temple is one of the most valuable monuments of the old coastal town. Destroyed and restored several times, it still bears witness to the long presence of Christian Orthodox Church here. Valuable treasury of the temple was opened for public in 1984, but from 1991 it languished for a decade and a half walled up in a poorly maintained shelter. After five years of painstaking restoration, in the spring of last year, it was again consecrated, blessed and opened to the public. And is there anybody here to visit and admire it?

Text and photographs: Damir Klјajić


n the very center of the Old Town of Zadar (Peninsula), right next to the Roman Forum, on the square named after the famous uskok Serdar Stojan Janković, there is Serbian Orthodox Church of the Holy Prophet Elijah. It is easy to find – immediately when you come to the Forum you will notice first the

bell tower, and when you start walking toward it, you will see the church. Less than a minute by foot from the most famous building in Zadar, St. Donat. Immediately after arriving to the Square of Serdar Stojan Janković you will find yourself in front of the entrance gate of the church, which already at first sight impresses with its SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 Priest Petar Jovanović


P i l g r i ma g e s

 A part of Serbian church treasury in Zadar

 Russian cross, 16th century. Incense holder, 18th century. Chalice made in Moscow, 18th century Miter, a work by Russians, 19th century A part of church library. Baptistery

late Baroque architecture. But still, all its beauty can only be seen when one enters it, because the interior of the church holds real artistic, cultural and spiritual treasure. The only remaining Orthodox temple in this city bears witness, with its Treasury, to the cultural past of Orthodox (primarily Serbian) in this area, and is one of the most valuable monuments of Zadar. RETURN OF WALLED UP HERITAGE Already in 1548, a Zadar prince gave to Orthodox Greeks the existing medieval Church of St. Elijah. The Greeks who, as refugees, constituted military border units of the so-called stratiots, were allowed to adapt the church interior to the Eastern religious service. In the second half of the 16th, and in th 17 and 18th centuries, an increasing num-

Assembly In 1808, a church-national assembly took place in the Church of Holy Prophet Elijah in Zadar, presided by Dandolo, general governor of Dalmatia. A decision was made about establishing a diocese and seminary, organization of parishes and monasteries, and many other important issues. The assembly conclusions were carried to Paris by the delegation headed by Gerasim Zelić. The Emperor approved the decisions of the Zadar assembly and in 1809 it adopted the decision on establishment of autonomous Serbian diocese in Dalmatia with its seat in Šibenik.


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Theft A few years ago, Jovanović reported to the police a theft of an extremely valuable icon of St. Nicholas from the church wall. During the war, among other things, three large icons on silver sheet metal were stolen and have never been found. Two smaller icons were found by Interpol in Trieste, and the icon of St. Nicholas from the 18th century was found by the police of Zadar two years ago.

ber of Orthodox Serbs is arriving in Zadar, and they take over the management of the church. The old and inadequate church was demolished and in 1773 a new one was built in its place, and nineteen years earlier the bell tower had been built. The new church was consecrated in 1805. Mihovil (Mihailo) Speranza, a painter from Corfu who worked in this area in the late 18th and early 19th century, painted the marble iconostas. The work was finished in 1811. The iconostas is the most important and the richest part of the church interior. The imperial and side doors were painted in 1828 by painter Jeftimije Popović. Icons from the old iconostas were transferred in 1815 to the newly built Chapel of St. Spiridon, demolished in World War Two. From the 15th to 19th century, a priceless collection was collected inside the

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Interior of the Church of St. Ilia in Zadar

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church: various exhibits created in Venice, Italo-Cretan, and mostly Russian and Serbian workshops. Most of these items were icons. – Unfortunately, many icons were destroyed in the bombing during World War Two. Only four icons from the old, i.e. original church were preserved – says the parishioner of Zadar, Archpriest Stavrofor Petar Jovanović. The major part of the collection, he says, is still preserved. The treasury was opened for the first time in 1984. – It was the only treasury that was opened by the Serbian Church in Croatia and everybody was able to see it. Unfortunately, during the war in the 1990’s, the treasury was closed and the priests left in all directions – Jovanović continues. In fear of theft, before leaving Zadar in 1991, the priests buried the collection in a hidden place in the church itself. It remained buried for thirteen years. – After my arrival here we started working on opening the treasury. Experts were invited, eminent Croatian conservators headed by Milјenko Domijan. Unfortunately, icons and other items had been closed unprofessionally, and a lot was almost ruined from moisture, especially icons – Jovanović emphasizes. The restoration began, says priest Jovanović. This painstaking work, on which experts from Croatia and Ukraine were involved, lasted for about five years. – And, thank God, the work was successfully finished. FAITH IN THE TRIUMPH OF GOOD, DESPITE EVERYTHING Twenty two years later, the treasury of the Church of St. Prophet Elijah was again opened for public, on May 17th last year. It was a memorable event. The treasury was consecrated and blessed by His Grace Bishop of Dalmatia Fotije. Many respected guests were present. – This is an important event, not only for the church municipality of Zadar, but also for the entire Diocese of Dalmatia, as well as for all of us gathered here, who are in this or that way admirers of beauty and church art – Bishop Fotije said then. – I deeply believe that the city of Zadar itself is enriched with this Treasury, because from now on it can be visited by many tour-

Returning Petar Jovanović, the parishioner of Zadar, has often been finding at the church door icons, various sacral objects and valuable books, disappeared in the latest war in the area of Zadar. Three valuable icons appeared on the church doorstep four days after the Catholic Christmas in 2010. Those oils of canvas show images of Jesus Christ, Mother of God with baby Jesus, or St. Vasilije Ostroški. Remorse? There were cases when citizens would appear themselves and return an object from the church, with an explanation that they had been safeguarding it. In this way, one woman returned a valuable book, several centuries old.

ists who come to this city, the city of deep Christian roots and extremely rich culture. Opening of the Treasury of Zadar is for us a sign of hope, sign of faith that good and beauty always triumph in the end. Icons and clerical objects from this Treasury, the Bishop added, indicate a different way to us. The way of light, the way of goodness, the way of the cross, which is the perfect expression of love for God and one’s neighbor. – God will give that all future visitors of this Treasury of Zadar are inspired by these values, which give and return the meaning to human life in general, and thus to the world in which we live. Icons are the most prominent in the Treasury. About thirty of them comprise one of the most important collections of this kind in the territory of Diocese of Dalmatia. There are also many liturgical objects, crosses, holy books, manuscripts, chalices, incense holders, church attires and an interesting collection of antimensions printed on canvas with wood carving or etching technique, which were manufactured between 17th and 19th century. A number of liturgical books printed in Venice, Moscow and Budim have also been preserved, as well as Serbian and Greek manuscripts. – The significance of the Treasury is difficult to describe in words – priest Jovanović emphasized. – It has enormous cultural and spiritual value, and it also shows that the Orthodox people here have existed for five hundred years. The Treasury of the Church of Holy Prophet Elijah in Zadar is open for all visitors, for the citizens of Zadar and numerous tourists. Unfortunately, visitors are rare, because of well-known reasons and circumstances.  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 St. Dmitri, tempera and gold on wood a work by Greeks, 17th century


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Raised on the principles of old nobility and honor, he was educated and brave. Circumstances changed, empires and opponents, and he led his unwavering battle, our, always the same. He could have abandoned the occupied Serbia forever in December 1525. He inflicted heavy defeats on the Turks near Kahlenberg and Baden, he defended Vienna and the Danube, the only one who met them in the battlefield in Slavonia on October 12, 1537. He fell as a hero, in the battle, and his head, like the head of Karađorđe later, was taken to the sultan in Constantinople. So he would see that it is possible

By: Jovo Bajić


ere, on the slopes of Venčac, Pavle Bakić, the last Serbian despot reigned until 1525. Defending Europe from the Turks, he died as a hero in Gorjani near Đakovo, on October 12, 1537.” These words are carved in the obelisk erected in the village of Banja near Aranđelovac, on the place where the court of Pavle Bakić used to be. Te monument was consecrated on October 12, 2009, for the 472nd anniversary of the hero’s death, the last crumb of Serbian medieval statehood of Nemanjić dynasty. And not far from there, in Viševac, two and a half centuries later, Karađorđe Petrović was born, the one who would lead the Serbs from slavery under Turks into the restoration of both freedom and state. Importance and characters of these heroes are also reflected in the fact that heads of both of them were sent to the sultan in Constantinople. The monument to Pavle Bakić, in the place that is today called Dvorine, was erected by the Association of citizens “Pavle Bakić”, founded in Aranđelovac to preserve memory of this hero of European battlefields in the first half of the 16th century. (And at the time when Pavle Bakić reigned on Venčac, Serbs understood the European solidarity literally and sacrificially, as a vow, confirming it with

their blood spilled in defending Budim, Vienna, Pressburg.) There, between the forest of Lomnica and the Jasenica creek, where Bakić’s court was located, one can arrive down a road covered with gravel from white Venčac marble. The obelisk is on the edge of the old cemetery, next to the foundations of a large and insufficiently explored building, maybe remains of a court or a church. On one of the last days in December 1525, Duke Pavle Bakić left here forever, leaving his court and estates with about fifty villages. He went north, toward the Sava River, then border between Turkey and Europe. He was accompanied by his wife Theodora, children (names of hi daughters Angelina and Marija are known), four brothers (Komnen, Manojlo, Matija and Mihailo) and one of the uncles (Petar), with families. Historian Jovan Rajić also mentions Pavle’s brothers Kliment and Dimitrije. They and three carriages filled with treasures were accompanied by fifty horsemen. They crossed the Sava, and on the other bank they were welcomed by Pavle Tomori, commander of Hungarian army, with his arms wide open. WHEN PAVLE CROSSED THE SAVA The Bakićs, old Serbian aristocrat family, is mentioned for the first time in 1476. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

Illustration: Predrag Todorović


H i s t o r y  Celebration near the monument to Pavle Bakić on Venčac

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In the territory of modern Serbia they had 64 villages, mostly in Užice district. Under the Turkish rule they extended their estates toward the north, what is today Šumadija, and had their court on Venčac. They had to provide soldiers for Turkish army and lead them themselves. Because of his heroism and warrior’s ethics, Pavle received the title of Duke. He was in great favor of sandžakbeg Ferhat-paša from Smederevo, sultan’s son in law. As a victim of intrigues on sultan’s court, Ferhat-paša was executed. He was replaced by Grand Visier Ibrahim, who accused Pavle Bakić that he was the instigator of a Janissary rebellion and that he kept valuables of the executed Ferhatpaša for himself. At that moment Bakić left Serbia and moved to Hungary. He was familiar with Turkish military tactics, and for this was highly esteemed by Pavle Tomori, commander of Hungarian army, who invested a lot of effort to help Bakić cross the Sava. Upon agreement, Pavle received estates in Northwest Hungary, in Komorin, Győr, Pilis and Somogy district, and later he received the Lak Fortress. Later, from King Ferdinand he also received Szombathely and Győr Fortress. He gave these estates to Serbian population who migrated with him. In Hungary, Bakić didn’t find what he expected. The country was then in turmoil, King Ludovic II was weak and incapable of restoring order, and noblemen had been feuding. Serbs made significant military force. In the area of what is today Srem, Bačka, Banat and Slavonia, there were estates of a large number of Serbian noblemen and warrior (Raič Božić, Matej Ovčarević, Stefan Berislavić, Marko Jakšić, Petar Petrović...). Having arrived there, Pavle brought the news that sultan Selim II is getting ready for great campaign against Hungary, which happened in spring of 1526.

Memory in Toponyms General Jovan Mišković visited the village of Banje one hundred and twenty years ago and left a testimony in his work “Bukulja and Venčac, geographical-historical sketch”. There are many antiquities that the people ties to the Bakić family, he says. “From the tavern in Banje, in about quarter of an hour, and above the spring of Banje, one arrives to a mild inclination below Drenjak, near Bakić Court... Les then half an hour from the Bakić Court, under Vel(iki) Venčac and Čot, Bakić’s spring is found in the creek and forest... There used to be Bakić’s vineyards at the foot of Drenjak inclination...”


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Hungarians prepared the defense and the main battle took place on August 29, near Mohač. Among Hungarian soldiers there were also Serbian warriors led by Pavle Bakić and Radič Božić. They proposed a different organization of the army and defense tactics, but their advices were rejected. Hungarian army suffered horrible defeat. Among numerous killed Serbs there was Matija, brother of Pavle Bakić. King Ludovic II fled from the battlefield and in panic horror drowned in a swollen creek. Turks freely walked into Budim. While Turkish army was rushing toward Budim, Bakić was hiding Serbs in refuges so they would not cross paths with the Turkish army. WISDOM OF A LEADER, HEART OF A WARRIOR After the defeat at Mohač and king’s death, civil war broke in Hungary. Duke of Transylvania Jovan Zapolja and Habsburg King Ferdinand II were fighting for the crown. In south Hungary at that time warrior star in the image of mysterious emperor Jovan Nenad Crni shone. In Banat and Bačka he gathered powerful Serbian army and soon drove away the Turks who were withdrawing from Budim, created a large free territory with the capital in Subotica, and entered Srem. In the civil war he was siding with both Zapolja and Ferdinand, actually with none of the, until he was tricked and killed (National Review wrote about this). Sultan Suleiman, called the Magnificent by the Turks, did not sit still for long. Already in 1529, he started toward Vienna with a great army. The Christian army, in which there were many Serbs, was getting ready for defense. Pavle Bakić with his warriors guarded, among other things, bridges on the Danube. At the same time, he was making ambushes, imprisoned Turkish soldiers, collected intelligence about planned attacks and notifying Vienna, in order to enable successful defense. Pavle inflicted heavy defeat on the Turks near Kahlenberg. Sultan Suleiman started his second campaign against Vienna in 1532. Having crossed the Sava and Danube, his army looted and burned Christian settlements. Among the Europeans who stood against this were Pavle and Petar Bakić with their

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Honors The memorial obelisk dedicated to Pavle Bakić was consecrated and memorial service was given to him and his soldiers by two archpriests of the Serbian Orthodox Church, metropolitan Amfilohije (then also deputy to Patriarch Pavle) and Bishop of Šumadija Jovan. About ten priest from the diocese of Šumadija participated in the service.

soldiers. A great battle took place in the vicinity of Baden. Bakić made an ambush for Osman-beg and his dangerous assault cavalry (akindžije), and defeated them. He personally killed Osman-beg in the battle. Bakić’s victory was celebrated throughout Christian Europe, and a book about his heroism was immediately written in German language. King Ferdinand confirmed to him and his heirs the estates in Western Hungary and gave them new ones. But such fame and recognitions caused envy and hatred among a part of Hungarian nobility. Valentin Terek wanted privileges and estates to be taken away from Pavle Bakić. There was also an increasing pressure to convert the Serbs into Roman Catholicism. Although Vienna was still in danger, on February 12, 1536, Roman pope praised the missionary of the Order of Saint Paul Đorđe Horvat for converting to Roman Catholicism a number of Orthodox Serbs in Slavonia. Pavle Bakić, representative of the Serbs in Hungary, opposed this. Strong in his identity and faith, he did not confuse things. As an illustration, although his scribes wrote official documents in Latin language, in accordance with the order of Europe at that time, at the bottom of all of them Pavle Bakić would put his signature in Cyrillic. NOBODY OUTPERFORMED HIM In 1537, Turkish army started a new campaign on Srem and Slavonia, from two directions. Commanders were Bosnian deputy Mehmed-beg and beglerbeg Mehmed-paša Jahjapašić from Budim. The Christian defense was an army comprised of Serbs, Croats, Czechs, Austrians, Moravians, Štajerci. Ivan Kacijaner was appointed top commander. Pavle Bakić led the cavalry, which mostly consisted of his countrymen. His brother Mihailo went with him, while Petar was entrusted to take

care of the family and estate from Hungarian noblemen. Exactly then, on September 20, King Ferdinand appointed Pavle Bakić, who was with army in Slavonia, the Serbian despot. In early October, two Turkish armies met near Osijek. Christian commander Ivan Kacijaner fled from the battlefield, scared to show up in battle. Serbian despot Pavle Bakić (it is not known for sure whether at that time he knew about the gained title of a despot) moved toward them with his horsemen. It was, the historians say, October 12, 1537. Near Gorjani, in the vicinity of Đakovo, a bitter battle broke between Serbian horsemen and Turkish Janissaries. In the first lines of battle, Pavle was shot to death. Many Serbian knights died trying to bring his body away from the battlefield, but they failed. Mehmed-beg Jahjapašić took Pavle’s head to the sultan in Constantinople. Hungarian historian Nikola Ištvanfi wrote then: “And so, finally, the most courageous hero Pavle Bakić died, the one who has not been outperformed by anybody in military virtues in the Hungarian army.” A lot of offspring were left by Pavle Bakić and his brothers, and many of them bravely fought in the battlefields of Europe in the decades to come. Under great pressure, in a long time period, they succumbed to assimilation. In a charter written in Hungary, Pavle Bakić mentioned that he had left “Blood relatives” on Venčac. General Mišković in his work reminds that at the time of Karađorđe’s uprising, there was a mention of Jovan Bakić, merchant from the village of Banje under Venčac. That is the last mention of this family. And Europe? Has it forgotten itself, and in itself the Serbian soldiers who gave their lives on the bulwarks of its defense?  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 Consecration of the monument and memorial to Pavle Bakić

 Archaeological explorations of the foundation of Bakić’s court on Venčac



Not Now,

but It Will Be He predicted many things. Death of Smail-aga Čengić and Prince Danilo, uprisings in Herzegovina, both Balkan Wars and both World Wars, lakes near Bileća and Gacko, passing of the train through a mountain between Bileća and Nikšić. A century in advance he warned his fellow citizens about the horrific suffering that their descendants would face in 1941, and who the hand of that Evil would be. He cured Nјegoš with medicinal herbs, honey and young kajmak and one delicate advice. He even described his own death and the place where he would rest. And he let us realize what has happened to us on our own By: Nemanja Tepurić

Photos: Siniša Stanišić, Nemanja Tepurić



he following was recorded about Mato Glušac in 1906 by Radovan Perović Nevesinjski, after oral accounts of Stojan Kovačević from Srđevići near Gacko: “Young and old, poor and rich, Serbs and Turks respected him and welcomed him. They knew that he was one of the leaders of good mountain zduhać (a person believed to have a supernatural ability to protect his estate from destructive weather conditions) and that he would not let the evil, coastal forces to take over the year in the mountains or do any kind of harm.” Perović also records the words of zduhać Živko Lažetić from Dobrelјa near Gacko: “When we get into the fight with zduhać from Rudine, there is a marvel you can see! We always defeat them, unless the coastal zduhać come to their aid. And if they do, we run to the highest mountains, only to bring them off track so they would not do harm in our fields!” Stojan Kovačević gives to Perović the following Mato’s description: “Broad-shouldered, bony, thin-faced, with big mouth and plump lips, dark skin, messy black hair, black moustache. Always with dreamy eyes radiating some unusual SRPSK A  БРОЈ 8-9  2014

light and unique wildness, and deep and many wrinkles over the rounded big forehead made all this even scarier. They dry cheek bones were protruding, and below them, all the way below his chin, there were three-four furrows, similar to dried out beds of winding creeks. He was always wrapped in cloth blanket, linen shirt, red felt short vest, woven belt, long underwear, socks, traditional opanci shoes with socks, fez with a turban around his head and a little carpet. He never carried weapons, except for a razor blade hanging on his belt, which he used to cut crosses and “Solomon’s letters” on every maple tree he would encounter. He always carried tinder and flint stone on his belt, a little bit of wax and cotton from the holy Vasilije Ostroški, and a bundle of various herbs and magic paraphernalia.” AND THE STORY SPREAD LIKE A CLOAK Glušac family was not different from other families and tribes of old Herzegovina. They originated in Katuni district, in Markovina, in the hamlet of Gluščevina, after which they got their last name. Mato’s father moved to Koriti, and worked as

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 A stone bridge on Ovčiji Brod, Herzegovina

a wageworker for certain Guzina. He had a widowed daughter-in-law, originally from Banjani, who, contrary to the customs, didn’t want to remarry, out of respect for her father-in-law. But after twelve years of being a widow she fell in love with Mato’s father and married him. Old Guzina didn’t like his daughter-in-law marrying a wageworker, and he cursed her with the following words: “May you give birth to the devil!” Less than a year later, on Friday, “at the certain hour”, in 1774, Mato was born wrapped in placenta. Having felt that the child had moved, and not wanting to wake up other people in the household, the woman from Banjani went out on un-mowed lawn, into the pitch dark night. She gave birth eas-

Zduhać Stuha, zduha or zduhać is a man with supernatural powers. During the night he leaves his body and watches high above his village, defending it from other stuvać. When a big storm comes, old people would say that it is stuhas fighting with one another. And when they clash, they take don’t pick and choose their weapons, so they take firebrands, straws, water drops from beech trees, and they especially like to take a broom and use it to chase away their opponents. The people of Herzegovina take their stuvaćs, who defend them from those of other people, in the same rank as saints and angels. Legend has it that one cannot become a zduha. They are born this way, in a stable, on a Friday, at a certain hour. The girl is the strongest from the moment of birth until she is breastfed for the first time.


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ily and standing and when she lowered her eyes, she saw the placenta. But, nothing in it was moving and there was no sound coming from it. Not far from her, the lawn mowers were sleeping. One of them, having heard the noise, woke up, grabbed his scythe and carefully approaches the place from which the sound was coming. Bright moonlight helped him to clearly see the confused women and understand what had just happened. He lightly swung his scythe, cut the umbilical cord and cu out the placenta. At that moment the child moved and cried, the moonlight disappeared and everything was covered by darkness, and all dogs in Koriti started barking. It was the first and the last time that dogs barked in Mato’s presence. For the first few years nobody noticed anything unusual. Mato was just like other children his age, taking care about small livestock, playing around the village, helping his mother and grandmother (he didn’t remember his father). When his voice became deeper, and he got stronger, he became more aloof. He was no longer throwing rocks, playing with jackstones and rings. And even when he would be in the company of others, it was obvious that his thoughts were somewhere else. And then, one night, he disappeared for the first time. In the beginning, Mato was not gone for a long time, or frequently. Sometimes, enough time would pass that his worried mother

would thank God for he had finally settled down. And exactly in that moment, he would disappear again. As there was no rule as to when he would disappear, nobody could tell how long he would be absent. And where he was and what he was doing was an even greater mystery. News would reach Koriti that he was seen once in Nevesinje, Nikšić and Cetinje, and the next moment on the coast. And when, in the fall, the shepherds would bring down their herds form the mountain, they would talk about their encounters with Mato. That is how the story started going around, all over Montenegro and Herzegovina, the story about Mato Glušac. I LOOK DOWN BEFORE YOU After his mother’s death, Mato completely neglected his house. Suddenly, an elder tree grew from underneath the threshold, and elderly people from Koriti only waived their heads. In Herzegovina, people knew that da elder tree is an excavation tree, and where it would sprout, the household would grow cold forever. He came to Koriti rarely and would only spend a short time there since his mother’s death. He usually stayed in Fojnica, between Gacko and Nevesinje, and after the death of Smail-aga Čengić, with his godfather Lazar Šulјa Popović in the village of Zagreda, near Danilovgrad. It was not by accident that after the killing of Smail-aga Čengić Mato hid

in Montenegro. This is what Čedo Baćović recorded in his book Montenegrin Prophecies: “Smail-aga went to Drobnjaci, to collect taxes, with one hundred and sixty horsemen from Gacko. They went to Ravno. Less than half an hour later, Mato Glušac from Koriti approaches them, and Smail-aga calls him: – Hey, Mato, I am glad to see you! Here, I got a letter from my godfather Đoko Malović that the princes from Drobnjaci are revolting, and I want you to tell me what will happen to me on my journey, you are in some kind of devil’s business! – Are you asking me, aga, to tell you everything I know? – What else would I ask you for, than for what you know? – Here, let us do it like this, aga, what I tell you, if I lie to you, you cut me! He was pleased:

 The Bileća Lake

It Will Be Heard Mato’s cotemporary and countryman (by origin), Mitar Tarabić, at the market of Užice, on May 28, 1868, for no apparent reason started yelling: “people, brothers, don’t let them! They killed our prince!” And the Popovićs from Zagreda talk about events from August 12 and 13 60: One day, sitting behind the fire, Mato suddenly jumps and shouts: “Uh, uh, woe is you today Montenegro. I could have saved you, I could have. But no, it is better this way.” When asked by family members what had happened, he only said: “It will be heard.” The following da news arrived that Todor Kadić killed Prince Danilo in Kotor. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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– Come on, speak, God help! – Really, aga, this time you will go town on Cetinje with your head, your horses will dance on Cetinje and drink water. For how long you will stay there, I really cannot say... – Mato, God willing!... he takes out a gold coin and gives it to him. They never saw each other again. Less than a month later, the news arrived: that Smail-aga was killed on Mlјetičak in Drobnjaci; that he was killed by the famous rebel Mirko Aleksić who cut off his head and took his horse Brnjaš to Cetinje, and gave it to bishop Rade – as the war trophy of his military feat. Little is known, even in Herzegovina, that Mato, in addition to his supernatural abilities, was also an excellent healer and herbalist. It was this skill of his that took him to Cetinje, to Bilјarda. This is what Novica Cerović wrote, after returning from Italy, accompanying Njegoš, who could not be helped by doctors in Padova: They found Mato Glušac and brought him before bishop Rade. – Matija, will you help me? Mato, taking a good look at him, says: – How could I help you, when, as you see, I lowered my eyes before you? But, I will also tell you, don’t go into the world, don’t lie on your side and don’t look at young women’s eyes, you will feel better. He ordered that they give him his mixture of herbs, to eat honey with kajmak, unsalted young cheese, to drink milk, does not ride a horse or walk much. In three months, Nјegoš recovered well, following Mato’s advices. HOW MUCH A MAN CAN BEAR Mato’s godfather Šujo Popović used to talk about one of Mato’s prophecies. When he was the godfather at the baptism of Šujo’s daughter Sinđa, he only whispered: – Sinđa, Sinđa... There will not be in this hour, but in the next one, God willing, there will be. Only many years later, Šujo used to say, they understood what Mato wanted to say then. “There will not be....” it meant there would be no more children, and that was really the case. Sinđa’s mother died soon after Sinđa was born, and Šujo had no more children with her. Mato’s words “... at a later hour, God willing, there will be” came true many years later, when Šujo remarried and had a big family, six sons and one daughter. Svetozar Popović records another story that is being circulated among Bjelopavlići.

Tunnel In the Region of Bileća people talk: – You all know Kešelјev Vao – Mato said once. – Well, when the iron snake starts going from Bileća to Nikšić, it will have a hard time trying to jump over Vao. Then it will try to bypass it, but even this will not be possible, so finally it would run through Vao, without being bothered by the fact that it is made by rock. Much later, in the times of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the railway started from Bileća to Nikšić, and a tunnel was cut through Kešelјev Vao. Everybody remembered Mato’s story, and legends about him started circulating again.

As the entire Bjelopavlići plains can be seen from Zagreda, in front of the house of Šujo Popović, while looking at it Mato said: – Do you see these plains? Time will come when a cat, from one roof to another, so as not to touch the ground, would be able to cross it. But, there will be some other things as well. A black snake would sprawl our across these plains, from one end to the other, and will encircle Garač. The prophecy came true. Bjelopavlići is today densely populated, and the major road winds through the plains. Mato predicted deaths of many of his contemporaries, little and great people, and he announced and forecasted his own death. Staying somewhere in Herzegovina, with a host whose house he visited frequently, one evening, already very old, Mato stood up and started packing. When asked by the hosts where he was going, he said: – Where other people are going, so I want to get closer. He bid them farewell once again from the doorstep and said: – When I die, my grave will be marked by one tree that brings fruit, but is used for nothing. That is how you will know where Mato’s resting place is. Mato never returned to Herzegovina again. He went to Bjelopavlići. And there, on St. Petka’s Day, the saint day of his godfather Petar Grgurević, one of the guests asked Mato to tell them something. Mato, already blind and weak, smiled and said: “New Year is near. On that day, Mato will either be able to see, or will die. But, I bet my soul on it, I would probably die.” His words came true. At New Year’s Eve of 1870 he died at the age of 96, in the same house in which the prophesied his death. He was buried the following day next to the  The house Church of St. Ćekla in Danilovgrad. Mediterranean hackberry tree grew on his grave, and of Mato Glušac in Koriti it still marks the place of his eternal rest.  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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Led By His Blue Star His contribution to Serbian culture is as big as a large academy’s. What Kočić is for literature, Vlado Milošević for music, he is for painting, museology, ethnography, photography and film. He left dozens of works, making a bridge between medieval and modern painting. He founded the first museum and made the first illustrated tourism guide of Bosnian March in four languages. He filmed the most important movie before World War II. The Croatian occupying forces killed him in the concentration camp of Jadovno and threw him into the Šaran Pit


eople from the March are artists by the drive in their soul. They search for and find ethics and aesthetics in nature, the people, in themselves. They are always in spiritual motion. Their strong fantasy becomes a religion, which conquers all. Reaches the empire, follows the star. Even in the most remote nowhere lands and inaccessible heights, where only eagles flock, they come upon a ‘church’, ‘king’s peak’, ‘duke’s grave’ – as if imperial and fairy palaces were there a while ago. Although no one has ever lit a fire there…” This was written by Spiridon Špiro Bocarić from Budva, who remained inextricably connected to the March and Banjaluka. Academic painter, ethnographer, publicist, art critic, pedagogue, numismatist, cameraman and photographer, historian and museologist, seems to be describing himself with those words. He saw beauty where many have not seen anything, believed in human goodness and justice even in the darkest times. BEGINNINGS OF MODERN PAINTING Spiro Bocarić’s path of life led from Budva, over Venice, Mostar and Sarajevo, to

By: Sandra Kljajić Banjaluka, where he lived and worked until he died as a martyr in 1941. Born in Budva on May 24, 1876, in a merchant’s family, from father Evanđel and mother Anđelika (born Raičević), he was interested in painting since his early childhood. His older brother Anastas was a painter and his first teacher. As an eighteen-year old boy, Špiro went to Venice, to study in Studio Scuola Disegno. Already in 1895, he enrolled in Regio Instituto di Belle Arti, where he stayed only one semester. He discovered his rolemodels there, among Italian painters from the classicist-romantic period, supporters of portrait painting. From Venice, he went shortly to Novi Sad and in 1896 joined Anastas, who worked in Mostar and Sarajevo. With their works, the Bocarić brothers filled the artistic emptiness in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the period between icon painting and modern painting.

 Špiro Bocarić (sitting) with his brother

Bust In 2006, the Museum of Srpska marked the 130th birth anniversary and 65 years since the death of Špiro Bocarić with an exhibition and placing his bust at the entrance to this important institution of national culture. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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 Two art paintings by Špiro Bocarić

– Between the 19th and 20th century, together with Anastas, Špiro Bocarić was a pioneer in the development of painting in B&H. Finding himself between academic realism, impressionism and pleinair, his opus might have been anachronistic compared to the developments in European art at the time. However, with a wish to make academic realism livelier, he made a synthesis of the old and the new, earning sympathy of numerousart purchasers – says art historian Slavka Mirosavljević, senior custodian in the Museum of Srpska. Anastas stayed in Bosnia for a while and then left to Zadar and to Belgrade, while Špiro stayed in Bosnia till the end of his life. HARDENING AND MATURING Spiro Bocarić lived in Sarajevo from 1897 to 1914. After Anastas’ departure, he

Monument to Kočić Reputable people of Banjaluka from the “Zmijanje” Society in the 1930s made their task to erect a monument to Petar Kočić in Banjaluka. Bocarić was very active in the section working on the project. After an open competition, the work of sculptors Antun Augustinčić and Vanja Radauš was selected. The monument was opened in the city park on November 1, 1932. “The correspondence shows Bocarić’s great wish to participate in creating the monument to his great friend...”


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lived with the Jungić family of military priests in Sarajevo. Spiro paid back for their kindness in paintings. He completed the portraits of priest Teodor and his wife Jovanka in 1897, which are his first two signed and dated works of that kind. The portrait of their son Beluš from 1898 is considered one of his best works. During that period, he painted many portraits ordered by the then famous people, as well as those of his friends. High church officials, rich merchants and artisans and their wives had an increasing need to confirm their status by owning portraits, both their own and those of their ancestors. Portrait of a Merchant, certainly the most important Bocarić’s portrait, was done in 1899. In the old royal palace salon in Belgrade, he painted the portrait of Queen Draga Obrenović in 1902. The artistic maturing of Špiro Bocarić reached its climax in the first decade of the XX century. Bosnian Fairy published a text stating that “Serbian academic painter Spiro Bocarić has been living in Sarajevo for a while”. “He is very skilled in painting, especially holy icons and entire iconostasis for Serbian Orthodox churches, therefore he is recommended to all Serbian municipalities and Serbs who order paintings from foreigners”, writes Bosnian Fairy. At that time, he painted several ordered iconostases in orthodox churches. First

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 The first ethnographic exhibition in the Museum of the Vrbas Banovina

the one in Nikšić and then the one for the church in Prača, dedicated to holy apostles Peter and Paul. Soon afterwards, he began working on landscapes, the main topic of impressionists, and painted portraits of “ordinary people”. His personal troubles began around 1909, while 1910 brought him “homelessness”, so Serbian politician Gligorija M. Jeftanović, owner of “Europe” Hotel offered

Heritage The Museum of Srpska today keeps 57 Bocarić’s paintings. A special whole are the portraits of Bosnian and Herzegovinian rebels and reputable citizens of Banjaluka, as well as a series of paintings with everyday life motifs. Besides paintings and drawings, he also left many photographs made in the field, which are today a valuable testimony about the life of that time. The Museum of the city of Sarajevo today keeps Bocarić’s official portraits of two mayors of Sarajevo and several portraits of rich Sarajevo families. Portraits of Metropolitans of Dabar and Bosnia Antim Grk, Nikolaj Mandić and Evgenij Letica, also in Sarajevo, are ownership of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Portraits of the Karađorđević family members were not exhibited from 1941 to 1990, when they first appeared at the exhibition “Karađorđević family in the works of painters” in Topola.


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his hospitality. In return, Spiro painted his portrait, as well as the paintings Sarajevo, Girls on the Fountain and Tombstones. FRIENDSHIP WITH KOČIĆ Young, educated and in a bohemian mood, according to the testimonies of his contemporaries, Špiro made many friends in Sarajevo. – He became involved in writing, socializing with young intellectuals gathered around the magazines Bosnian Fairy, Homeland, Development… His friendship with writer Petar Kočić was important, since, thanks to it, Bocarić fell in love with Bosnian March and Zmijanje. According to his writing in Homeland in 1907, Bocarić visited the March for his artistic studies of “folk costumes and types” – explains Mirosavljević. He adds that Kočić was the one who initiated Bocarić to begin researching the ethnographic material of Bosnian March. – He encouraged him to get involved in the folk art and beauty of our tradition. Folk art, the code language, remained an eternal inspiration for Špiro Bocarić. He

used it and collected “the lines and shapes, as well as various patterns from folk costumes, distaffs, folk belts and cribs”, from the area of Vrbas Banate. His friendship with young intellectuals, fighters for national freedom, especially with Kočić, made Špiro Bocarić politically misfit, so he was exiled to Banjaluka. Although forced to go to Banjaluka, Bocarić soon found his place there as well. Shortly after his arrival, he became part of the group of intellectuals who plucked Banjaluka out of a several centuries long cultural and educational lethargy. After participating in the Second Yugoslav Art Exhibition in 1906 in Sofia, Bocarić received offers from exhibition salons in Zagreb. He first had solo exhibitions there, then with Ivan Tišov and Josa Bužan in 1920, and then a collective exhibition in the “Ulrich” Salon in Vinkovci in April and May of 1923. In 1925, again in the “Ulrich” Salon, he had one solo exhibition and one with Milenko D. Đurić. The authorities of the city of Sarajevo ordered from him the portrait of Duke Stepa Stepanović for the City Municipality of Sarajevo, while the Land Government

hired him for the interior of the newly built summer residence of the Karađorđević dynasty in Han Pijesak. Bosnian March became Vrbas Banate in 1929, an administrative unit of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. Following the decision of the ban of Vrbas Banate Tisa Milosavljević, upon the order of king Alexander Karađorđević, the Museum of the Vrbas Banate was opened in Banjaluka on September 26, 1930. Špiro Bocarić was appointed its first manager.

 Špiro Bocarić in his office

MARTYRDOM With enormous will and enthusiasm, Bocarić engaged himself in founding and organizing the Museum. The first exhibition and the entire activity of the Vrbas Banate Museum are related to him. “Auxiliary departments of the Banate Museum”, which collected museum objects, were immediately founded throughout the Banate. The documents of the Museum of Srpska show the interest of the wider public aroused by Bocarić’s numerous lectures, indicating the significance of national heritage and role of the Museum SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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in it. Many individuals granted different valuable historical and ethnographic objects to the Museum, clothes, embroideries, weapons, tools, and alike. Already during the first ten years of its existence, much nationally and culturally valuable material was collected. – We are solidifying the foundation for national education by collecting and arranging that ethnographic treasure… Unfortunately, today we have the same obstacles during collecting ethnographic material for museums, as those when our folk poems were collected. People then used to say that they are valueless shep Špiro with Desanka Stojanović herds’ and goatkeepers’ poems, just like today they say that the poems written with Nedić and Zumra a needle, folk ornaments and embroidery Džinić, wearing traditional clothes are plain rags, although it was scientifically  A part of the museum exhibition based on the idea of Špiro Bocarić

Photography and Film Bocarić was also interested in numismatics, paleontology, mineralogy, especially photography. His photographs today are a valuable testimony about old architecture in B&H, people, landscapes and customs. He published the first illustrated tourist guide “Vrbas Banate” in English, German, French and Serbian. He made several ethnographic movies with sixteenmillimeter camera, among which the most valuable one was preserved – the film about the Vrbas Banate (1937). Today it is kept in the Museum of Srpska and makes the most valuable cinematographic material made in the Bosnian March area before World War II.


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and artistically ascertained a long time ago that folk embroidery, just like folk poems, are the greatest spiritual treasure our nation has had since its beginnings – said Bocarić once. In the eve of the war in 1941, his monograph Folk Ornaments of the Vrbas Banate was prepared for publishing. Thanks to favorable circumstances, it was preserved and published in 1997. It includes a series of Bocarić’s texts about Bosnian March and its folk art. “This book and ornaments from the March are a spiritual whole, dialects of a multiple aesthetical expression. They show us how emotions of this nation found means in ornaments to, together with the language and customs, relate in aesthetics, as well the type and style of their national individuality”, wrote Bocarić in the monograph. He received recognition for his work on December 31, 1932. With the “decree of his majesty the king, Špiro Bocarić, academic painter and manager of the Banate Museum in Banjaluka, was awarded with the Ordain of the Yugoslav Crown of the Fourth Degree”. When, after moving several times, the Museum got its space in the newly built Home of King Peter the First Liberator in 1934, Bocarić organized the first exhibition entitled “Banate Agricultural Exhibition”, with homemade objects. There were also paintings, figural compositions and individual portraits of Petar Mrkonjić, army leaders, dukes, hayduks, Serbian benefactor Miss Adelina Paulina Irbi (1833–1911) and organizers of the Bosnia-Herzegovina Uprising (1875–1878), created by Špiro before 1933. Bocarić painted many portraits for the representative hall in the newly built Home building. (...) The Croatian occupation authorities in Banjaluka replaced Spiridon Špiro Bocarić as the Museum manager and closed it down on July 4, 1941. He was released soon afterwards, but arrested again on July 12. Even today nobody knows how and where exactly he was killed or where his grave is. According to most historical sources, he was brought to Gospić, and then, together with many other arrested Serbs, killed on July 19 and thrown into Šaran’s Pit (“Jadovno” Concentration Camp”). 

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Living in the Memory of the Offspring Their examples radiate light. Since the 19th century, this priest family from Prijedor was producing renowned people. Dr. Mladen was the hero of the film with the same name from 1975, and this famous person from Prijedor was played by Ljuba Tadić. Sreten, was one of the founders of modern Serbian sculpture, an author of several masterpieces that are important symbols, such as the monument to Karađorđe in front of the St. Sava Temple and the National Library in Belgrade. We are reminded of all this by the important exhibition, a part of the Museum of Kozara By: Aleksandra Glišić


he modern memorial house of the Stojanović Family, a department of the Museum of Kozara from Prijedor, was built almost identical to the family house of Gavra and Sima Stojanović from 1893, which had been located in the same place. It was officially opened on May 15, 2007. The original house of the priest family Stojanović from 1864 was burnt down in great fire from 1882, we are reminded by

Zoran Radonjić, director of the Museum of Kozara. Then a new one was built in 1893. In this building, given to the Museum in 1960, there were two exhibitions, dedicated to Dr. Mladen Stojanović and freedom fighters from Prijedor area. This building was demolished in 1989 because of its age. Through cooperation with the Municipality of that time and the Institute for Protection of Cultural Monuments of B&H, a SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

 From the Stojanović family album


T r ac e s  Restored house of the Stojanović family in Prijedor, today a part of the Museum of Kozara

new building was erected, modeled after the old one, and furnished. And then everything stopped until 2006, because of the war, lack of money, and also because of lack of interest of those who were (i)responsible. Then, in 2006, a tender was announced for conducting the work on the second phase of reconstruction of the building, and it was all completed in early 2007. In 2006 and 2007, Radonjić says, they renewed contacts with descendants and heirs of the family of Sreten Stojanović, which contributed to supplementing the museum collection. The preliminary and construction plans were made, and two permanent exhibitions were mounted: “Historical exhibition on the Stojanović family”, with a special focus on Dr. Mladen Stojanović to whom more than a half of the exhibition was dedicated, and on the first floor the exhibition “Selection from the legacy of Sreten Stojanović”. Author of the exhibitions is archaeologist Milenko Radivojac, in cooperation with Predrag Marjanović, a painter and curator of the Museum of Kozara. Radivojac, who had been the director of the Museum of Kozara for several years, was one of the initiators of the reconstruction of the Stojanović family house and obtaining the works by Sreten Stojanović. The exhibition consists of numerous documents, photographs and smaller three-dimensional exhibits, as well as forty one paintings in different techniques, six sculptures and five reliefs from the artistic opus of Sreten Stojanović. One bigger sculpture was mounted in front of this house of history, welcoming the visitors. The permanent exhibition is conceived in such a manner that, with time, new exhibits and artwork can be added to it. Vedrana Adamović, senior curator of the Museum of Kozara, says that the memorial House of the Stojanović family attracts numerous visitors.

Enrichment Through contacts with the heirs of the family of Sreten Stojanović (Milica Arežina) and members of the Stojanović family (Dr. Sreten Bila and Mladen Ignjatijević from Belgrade, and Mladen Stojanović from Munich) – Zoran Radonjić said – we have obtained 290 drawings and sketches, 26 tempera paintings, 57 aquarelles, three bronze sculptures, six small bronze portraits, four smaller bronze reliefs, one gypsum relief, as well as several personal items of Sreten Stojanović. Numerous catalogs from the periods before and after World War Two were also donated.


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 Danijela Radosavac, a documentarist in the Stojanović Memorial House

– The greatest interest is certainly for the part dedicated to Dr. Mladen Stojanović, because a large number of visitors are for the first time able to see the versatility of his personality. Of course, it all depends on personal interest of the visitors as well as the character of the visit itself – Adamović says. DOCUMENTS ABOUT THE SIZE

 A part of the exhibition dedicated to Dr. Mladen Stojanović Exhibition dedicated to sculptor Sreten Stojanović

It is important, Adamović says, that since 2007, as a department of the Museum of Kozara, the house has been located again in the same place where it was in 1864. – From the historical perspective, the most important are documents related to the period of fight for church and school autonomy, construction of the church in Kozarac and generally cultural development in the city of Prijedor in the late 19th and early 20th century. Some documents are related to events connected with the Assassination in Sarajevo and connection of the Stojanović brothers with those events. Adamović adds that personal items of the eldest members of the Stojanović family are especially interesting.

Attraction The Museum of Kozara was founded in 1953. Until 1984 and the place where it is located now, he changed seven different locations. The museum exhibitions attract many people who come to Prijedor. In recent years, most of them want to visit exactly the house where the members of the famous Stojanović family were born.


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– Library of Dr. Mladen Stojanović is especially important. In addition to a number of medical books, it also contains books of poetry that Mladen was reading with great pleasure. Most of them are written in German. An important part of the permanent exhibition consists of objects from the medical office of Dr. Mladen, which was located in the house from 1929. Legacy of Sreten Stojanović is also an important part of the Memorial House of the Stojanović Family. In May 2014, the Art Collection was enriched with an aquarelle which had been brought from Munich by Mladen Stojanović, son of Velјko Stojanović, the youngest of four sons of priest Sima. He has donated many paintings, drawings, photographs and books to the Memorial House of the Stojanović Family. Although he has been living in Munich for many years, this nephew of the famous citizens of Prijedor, Dr. Mladen and academician Sreten, is emotionally tied to his hometown. – I am proud to be able to enrich the collection of the Memorial House once again, partly from the family treasury – he said then. They say that he comes to Prijedor almost every year, and especially since 2007, when the family house received new clothes. The aquarelle donated by Stojanović is exceptionally valuable, because it was made six decades ago and has the author’s signature. Artist Sreten Stojanović is the founder of modern Yugoslav sculpture. He was born in Prijedor in 1898, and after World War One he goes to Vienna, where his art education begins. After this he spent three years in Paris, studying in the studio of the famous Emile Antoine Bourdelle, who directed him to the roads of modern sculpture. In 1922, he moves to Belgrade where, in 1937, he was elected associate professor at the Art Academy, and later tenured professor. In addition to sculpture, painting and graphics, he was also involved in art criticism and writing essays. After World War Two, he was elected the rector of the Academy of Fine Arts in Belgrade and corresponding member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, becoming is regular member in 1959. He died in Belgrade in 1960. 

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Childhood of Automobilism From the first automobile (1903), first driver (Sreten Kostić), first petrol station (1919), first and only “Formula 1” race here (1939), from the time brandy was poured into the cooler instead of antifreeze, to the present time, a long road was passed. When you come to the Automobile Museum in Majke Jevrosime 30, you can travel far. Depends on you. On how much you can still enjoy and drive through time. You’ll see: we were not that fast, but we were deeper, more passionate and more romantic

By: Uroš Matić


hen one of the only thirty specimens of the “Nesselsdorf ” car was delivered on April 3, 1903 at 6:20 to the Serbian capital from Austria by train, suspicion, even fear of Belgrade citizens was more than obvious. Even the tram in Belgrade was pulled by horses at that time. Now, the coach suddenly became free of clatter and neighing of horses, without reins and whips. They were replaced with cylinders and a loud, twelve horse power “Boxer” type engine. “The welcome in Belgrade passed without any special incidents. Some stared in amazement, some made a sign of cross believing they stumbled upon the devil”, told later the first Serbian driver Sreten Kostić. “It was much worse in the country. Here’s one description: ‘A dragon passed through our village last night, with flaming eyes and chugging, tearing down everything in its way.’” When the news spread about the price of “that dragon”, incredible twenty administrative salaries, that is 17.000 Austro-Hungarian crowns, the amazement of the people grew larger. Even the owner of the car, officer and merchant Božidar Radulović, didn’t dare to drive it, so he hired his friend, photo-zincographer Sreten Kostić, thinking that, due to his vocation, he was suitable for driving (pro-

cessing photographs on printing plates requested calm hands and not consuming alcoholic beverages). Without any idea about the technical wonder, curious and brave, Kostić started off into the adventure. It was common for the company selling the car to send an instructor, so an Austrian, whose name, unfortunately, wasn’t noted, came to Belgrade. Sreten Kocić learned to drive forty-five days, passed the exhausting all-day examination before a commission and thus became a driver. The first among the Serbs. The first drive began from the railway station, up Nemanjina Street, then through Kneza Miloša, and ended in Topčider. Since that time, Sreten Kostić signed as a chauffeur, not a photo-zincographer. From 1903 to 1912, he was a chauffeur for the Belgrade banker Vasa Radulović and the following three years for King Petar. In 1915, during the withdrawal in World War I, the king’s “Cadillac” was burned, so Kostić was dismissed from his

 A car of King Petar Karađorđević from 1905 “BMV 327/328”, Germany, 1938

Photo: “National Review” archive, Automobile Museum, Dragan Bosnić

High-Class Job Being a chauffeur was a high-class job. This is testified by the fact that Sreten Kostić, the first driver in Serbia, earned an own car and villa from his new profession, and opened a private driving school. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


A nna l s service. Until the end of the war, he drove the son of King Nikola in Cetinje. TEMPTATIONS OF THE PIONEER AGE A month after the first, the second car arrived to Belgrade, “Maurer-Union”. Until the beginning of the Great War, there were about a hundred in Serbia. After the import of the first vehicles, the foundations of automobilism in Belgrade were soon placed. They were led by engineer Andra S. Ristić, representative of German manufacturers. He made the first taxi station in Terazije, next to “Moskva” hotel, built the first garage (present Automobile Museum in Majke Jevrosime Street) and repair shop, opened the first driving school. At the end of World War I, there was not a single car in Belgrade in driving condition. The war left deep and horrible traces. Comparing to the number of inhabitants, Serbia probably suffered the biggest loses, both in people and material goods and technology, losing “half of its national treasure”. “Serbia has no transportation means, no railroads, no horses, no mules, no freight vehicles, only a few oxen”, states the report of the American Mission from 1918. Some of the pre-war cars, as J. Božinović states, were taken by the army, some remained “in the foot of Albanian rocky mountains during the retreat or were destroyed in the attempt to reach Thessalonica”. (“Motorization of the Serbian Army”, Pinus Zapisi, 4, Belgrade 1996) One of the numerous problems of drivers at that time was gasoline. The engine construction of the first cars enabled them to use different kinds of fuel. Gasoline, oil, crude oil, various mixtures of denatured alcohol and alcohol... Petroleum was sold in pharmacies, called drugstores at the time,

“Ford T” The “Ford T” exhibit in the Belgrade Automobile Museum was manufactured for the German market and assembled in Berlin. It arrived here in 1970, purchased by Aleksa Aleksić, representative of “Ford” in Belgrade. It was used for filming several TV series and movies.


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Understanding of Speed The organizers of the “Belgrade Grand Prix” in September 1939 were Kingdom of Yugoslavia Auto-Moto Club and “Politika”, supported by the Yugoslav Touring Club “Nebojša” from Belgrade. The time of the winner Tazio Nuvolari was 1 hour, 4 minutes and 3 seconds and he drove his fastest lap with an average speed of 130,83 kilometers per hour. The fastest lap in the race was driven by Hermann Miller in “Auto-Union”: 135,92 kilometers per hour. World famous drivers Ralph Reze, Willy Brim, Hans Wegner competed in the sports car category, up to 2.100 ccm.

which had a wider offer of goods than the present day ones. Fuel was packed in small unpractical bottles and expensive. Drivers had the liberty to amend the fuel, so Božidar Radulović mixed gasoline with gas. Gas stations appear after World War I, and the first was opened on August 28, 1919 in Knez Mihailova 15. Seven years later, Belgrade got the permission to place tanks and petrol stations in thirteen locations. The station was made of a barrel on wheels. The fuel was loaded into the tank using a hose. On the road, drivers always had a spare pail with them, with the capacity of 4,55 (English) or 3,79 liters (American). The quality of petrol was not measured by the number of octanes, but by its specific weight: the one with less weight had a higher quality. One of the best companies dealing with gasoline was “Balkan”. They were the only who had double petrol stations, the most up to date devices and were open also during the night. WHISKER AND PEDALISTS After the war, the American automobile companies penetrated the European market. So, a 1928 “Buick” could be seen in Belgrade, with a high class six-cylinder engine. Only eleven such specimens were manufactured for export. Common was 1925 “Citroen B-10”. Queen Marija Karađorđević had a “Nash”, “Standard 8” type, model 870. She drove it from Belgrade all the way to the Montenegrin coast. There were also Italian “Lancia Lambada”, Czech “Skoda 6P” and “Aero 10”. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


A nna l s  “Lancia Lambda”, Italy, 1926 “Mercedes 300 CE Adenauer”, Germany, 1956

However, this and the following period were certainly marked by the famous “Ford T”. Manufactured from 1908 to 1927, it was the first American mass produced car. It was famous in Serbia as “Ford Pedalist”, because the speed was regulated with a pedal. They also called it “Ford Whisker”: it had two leverages under the wheel, looking like moustache, for pre-starting and adjusting the gas. Although engine had electric ignition, it requested manual starting in cold days. In Serbia at the time, brandy was poured into the cooler instead of antifreeze. The wheels with wooden spokes reminded of coaches. Every second car in Serbia between the two wars was this. Whisker and Pedalist. The import of cars in Serbia increased in the 1930s. Representatives of the top European industry appear: “Rover”, “Morris”, “Auto-Union”, BMW. There were almost no luxurious and expensive cars, such as the “BMW 327/328”, the fastest sports car at that time. The recovery from the war was long, the development gradual and modesty necessary in every segment of life. Besides vehicles, the Belgrade market also offered accompanying products: wheels, lights, horns, fuel, clothes, eyeglasses, caps, special coats... A RIDE THROUGH TIME The “Formula 1” race at the “Kalemegdan Park” race was held on September 3, 1939. It was the biggest sports event in Belgrade ever. There were 75.000 spectators, whereas the population of Belgrade at the time was 360.000. At the same time, it was the last such event before the war: World War II was just beginning to rage, Europe was again turning into a wound and battlefield. The “Grand Prix” was organized to honor the birthday of young King Petar II Karađorđević.

Backing The book-catalogue “Automobiles in Belgrade 1918–1941”, made for the exhibition organized in 2002 by the Belgrade Historical Archive, Automobile Museum and “Karić Foundation”, gives a nice review of the early development of automobilism in the Serbian capital city. “It returns to our collective memory many forgotten images of automobile champions, magnates, famous repairmen, important car merchants in Belgrade...” offering reliable facts, with a charm of a chronicle preserving the spirit of an époque, it is a good reading material for readers and a starting point for explorers.


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The most successful local contestant, representative of Kingdom of YugosPBlavia, was Boško Milenković. Although he was riding the inferior bolide “Bugatti 51” and lost much time in cooling the engine, we won excellent fourth place. Higher ranked were Italian champion Tazio Nuvolari, one of the best drivers of all times, who drove the famous 500 horse power “Auto-Union D”, and two German contestants, Manfred von Brauchitsch and Hermann Miller. (...) The Automobile Museum reminds us of all this, with its remarkable exhibits and lively images. It was opened exactly twenty years ago, in 1994, as a joint institution of the City Hall and film director Bratislav Braca Petković, passionate car collector, owner of about a hundred old-timers. Thanks to the immense desire of Bratislav Petković to preserve the memory of the beginning of automobilism in Serbia, we have before us the unique museum exhibition, a panorama of irresistible old four-wheelers. The Automobile Museum is also unique for the fact that all its exhibits are in driving condition. One exhibit – a rare model of “Porsche” amphibian, a German military vehicle from 1943, made for the attack on Russia in World War II, is even in sailing condition. The oldest exhibit is the French 1897 “Marot Gardon” tricycle. The building, today under state protection, was the first modern garage in the Balkans. It was built in 1929, according to the design of Russian architect Valeriy Vladimirovich Stashevsky, based on the highest standards of the time. Due to its extraordinary acoustics, one part of the edifice was turned into a theater. The first staged play in it was made according to the authentic documentation and personal belongings of Lazar Radić, another Serbian driver, who competed in the 1939 “Belgrade Grand Prix” race, in the sports cars category. Radić’s BMW is exhibited in the Museum today. When you come to this unusual museum in the center of Belgrade, in Majke Jevrosime 30, you can travel far. Depends on you. On how much you are able to enjoy and drive through time. Perhaps you will reach the place from which you can clearly see that we used to be less fast, but therefore deeper, more passionate and more romantic. Don’t forget to return, in spite of everything. 

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Fervor Must Be Felt Comeback of this demanding genre, seven decades later, has seriously shaken the cultural scene in Srpska and in a positive way opened many important issues. The production is a real cultural feat, with over one hundred participants, almost all of them graduates from the Academy of Arts in Banjaluka. Banjaluka has shown that it has great creative potential, and that it deserves to, in a near future, get a national theatre with drama, opera and ballet By: Vanja Vojinović


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hile the thunderous applause made the ground around the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska in Banjaluka almost shaking, eighty participants in operetta Orpheus in the Underground, their faces beaming, are bowing before the audience. The scene is repeated this spring and summer, and then on December 12 and 13, 2014, always marking the end of brilliant performance of the most famous and the greatest work by Jacques Offenbach. The great comeback of operetta to Banjaluka stage, seven decades later, is the result of efforts of the local Academy of Arts, who produced and has been performing this work. The director is Goran Damjanac, conductors are Branka Radošević Mitrović and Ognjen Bomoštar, dramaturge is Mario Ćulum. Set and costume designer is Dragana Purković Macan, and choreographer Tanja Dukić Čičić. The role of Eurydice is playing by Milјana Brezičanin, and Orpheus by Vlada Danić.

– I did productions that belong to musical theatre, but this is the first time that I direct an operetta. It is different. In addition to the script, actually libretto, operetta also has musical compositions – Goran Damjanac says. About one hundred young people participate in the work on this operetta, of which there are eighty performers. In addition to students, most performers are artists who have graduated from or are employed at the Academy of Arts in Banjaluka. – With participation of several guests, this project is almost fully created with forc-

For Banjaluka Opera – I hope that with this production we will make Banjaluka proud of what it has, exactly because its artistic potential is sometimes underappreciated – says opera singer Maja Manojlović Dobrijević. – The entire ensemble consists of people from Banjaluka, which means that we have the staff, who may bring about a complex piece of work like this. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


S t a g e  There is great effort behind the success: Branka Radošević Mitrović rehearsing with the orchestra Singing rehearsal

es of Banjaluka Academy, all three of its departments – Damjanac emphasizes. He says that all young artists have used the opportunity in the right way to show their talents. – I only have words of praise for all the participants. Their enthusiasm has made working on this production a game in which we all enjoyed – the director adds. He also reminded us of the great significance of this project for Banjaluka as a city of culture and arts. – In this way, the Academy of Arts and National Theatre of Srpska present a huge creative potential of Banjaluka, and it will show that this city deserves to, in a near future, get its national theatre, together with drama, opera and ballet. LOVE HAS REMAINED LOVE The plot of this play is a comic paraphrase of the famous myth of Orpheus who, although a mortal, goes to the underground to find his loved one. His fate will be decided by the gods. In the interpretation of this myth in Banjaluka, the artists have tried to indicate the modern “gods” who make decisions about our fate. – I have been singing for years, but this is the first time that I perform in operetta. Important singing and acting experience was gained from the energy we invested in creating this work – says Vlado Danić, who was entrusted with the lead role of Orpheus. Ballet dancers from Dance Club “City Jazz” also perform in the operetta. – The main driving force is our great desire to show how much we can do – says opera singer Milјana Brezičanin, who is playing the role of Eurydice. Therefore, for many participants, Orpheus was the first challenge of this kind. – If you are ambitious enough and you want to do something right, there is a fervor that must be felt on the stage. But when one is aware how important this is for all of us, the difficult circumstances

Example All income from the opening night and the second performance of the “Orpheus in the Underground”, this past summer, as well as the fees of all participants, went to help the victims of last year’s flood in Srpska. This wonderful example was met with great acclaim, just like the production itself.


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will be overcome – the conductor Branka Radošević Mitrović says. Unselfish support to young colleagues was given by actors Slađana Zrnić (in the role of Juno) and Velimir Blanić (John Sticks). Zrnić did the stage movement for the choir, but also encouraged the musicians to jump into the roles of actors. – I am overjoyed for being a part of this. Banjaluka has all the capacities to get an opera and ballet stage, and we will prove this – Zrnić says. The role of Venus, the goddess of love, sensuality and beauty, is played by opera singer Maja Manojlović Dobrijević. – From the very beginning I enjoyed working on this very inspiring character. Thanks to the beautiful costumes, Venus here is very sensual. Roles of the gods that we play are parody to the privileged group of the society which, because of being spoiled and inaccessible, want a little bit more fun, but through a parade of trash and kitsch – Manojlović Dobrijević says. Since she appears in the role of goddess Venus, Manojlović Dobrijević also commented the display of emotions in this operetta: – Love has not changed its form. Love has remained Love, but those who find themselves in its trap become the subjects of comic situations. BREATHING FOR THE ART Mladen Matović, composer of the national anthem of the Republic of Srpska, had only words of praise for his colleagues. – The comeback of operetta to the National Theatre of Srpska, through the main door, is a true cultural feat, a result of extraordinary Don Quixote-like efforts of the organizers, professors and students of the Academy of Arts in Banjaluka – Matović says. The greatest contribution to the magical night at the premiere last summer, Matović does not forget, had opera singer Jasmin Bašić. – Yes, he was the hero of the opening night. Despite serious health problems, despite the advice to stay in the hospital, he signed that he would perform under his own responsibility, and he excelled in the role of Jupiter in such circumstances. This is how one lives and breathes for the arts – Matović emphasizes. 

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Towards the Heights of the

Holy Despot He was growing up by the relics of Dušan the Great and always used to greet warriors-guards in front of Ružica. He remembers one issue of “Svetosavsko zvonce” and some yards of Palilula, likes Hugo, Pushkin and a whole bouquet of Serbian poets. He reached the ancient layers within us with music, heard our relatives in time and anticipated deep connections, beautiful and mysterious. He spent only two hours in Dublin, yet remained there forever. His heart gave him a yellow card back then, and he is a wise player. He remained enchantingly common, “a true anti-star”. He does not play important, he is important

By: Branislav Matić


ou think you have Merlin’s school friend before you, Lancelot’s magical lute player or the boatman of Avalon. And it isn’t. It is our Aca Celtic, vivid Belgrade citizen, a sprout of deep Celtic layers within us. He was born on St. Thomas day in 1969. His father is from the Timok area, from Zagrađe in Zaječar, and his mother a merge of Moravska (in the Czech Republic) and Belgrade, “with a Valjevo branch”. His ancestors were teachers and soldiers, aristocrats and musicians. He is a musician too, frontman of a famous band, radio presenter, editor in Radio Beograd Children’s Program. You meet him and ask: “Where are you, Aca?” He joyfully replies: “Eeeverywheeere!” And already passes around the corner, like a bird. However, he was willing to be caught into the net of this conversation. White City. Belgrade... Ha, my Belgrade is somewhat more peaceful, calmer, with rivers flowing slower than in the one we have today. Yes, there are a few places which always stir up my feelings, sometimes even trigger a few tears.

Interestingly, my sacral places in Belgrade are truly sacral. Church of St. Mark. The Chivalric Church in which Emperor Dušan dreams his eternal dream. His sarcophagus has always provoked my imagination, returned me to the book Magical World of Đorđe Lobačev. I also remember priest Gvozden from the small Church of St. Sava, before the Big Church began rising. One Sunday, I think, he brought Svetosavsko zvonce. Even today I have this magical book with golden-purple covers somewhere in my home. As I was growing up, my Belgrade views were growing wider. My parents used to take me to a morning walk through Bel-

 Near the Church of Ružica in the Belgrade Fortress

Literature and Music – At one point, Orwell’s “1984” truly disturbed my image of the world. I was, I think, about 14. Some would say: too early for such a book. But I chose it for “free reading” and wrote a tractate on eight pages. My teacher didn’t believe I wrote it myself. Then came other great writers. My favorite was and remained Victor Hugo (“The Hunchback of Notre-Dame”, “Les Misérables”...). Music has always been an inseparable part of my being, and this part is very crowded. But, let’s say that Pyotr Ilych Tchaikovsky, Jethro Tull, Iron Maiden and The Pogues always meant more to me than others.

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 Aca Seltik as a young boy and as an adult, already with colorful eyes

 With his wife in Manasija, summer of 2012

grade on weekends. It was often the two of us, my father and I, while my mother stayed at home, so that we could have a proper lunch afterwards, “with a spoon”, as our people say. In “Kališ”, a boy simply gets dizzy from all those towers and cannons. My favorite place, even today I like to go there with my children, was another chivalric church, Despot’s Ružica. To say hello for the hundredth time to the warriors guarding its entrance, to stop at the Church of St. Petka for a glass of spring water and to, at the bend on the road between the two churches, greet major Dragutin Gavrilović and his heroes. (...) There are certainly other places which were important in my life as well. I was able to enter KST (Club of Technical Faculty Students) whenever and however I pleased, even though entrance was permitted only to those above 18. The father of my “club friend” Goranče was the Faculty janitor and they lived in an apartment next to KST. I spend half of my life in KST, it was the place I met my wife. We rushed every Saturday to Dom Omladine to “Hit of the Week”. The crème de la menthe of Belgrade rock and roll came to the garden of SKC. At one point, “Akademija” was second on the list of the best European clubs. I could also tell you about some dear “common places”, some yards in Palilula, passageways in Vračar, paths and roads then known only to my generation. But it would take long. And we should also leave something for later.

Studies – I studied inorganic chemistry at the Faculty of Technology and Metallurgy, but I never envisioned myself in a lab and white coat. It was the family inertia pulling me to study the same thing your parents had. However, life arranged it differently. After the army, I entered Radio Beograd and stayed there until the very day.


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Cities I relate to. There are two more cities in which I literally feel at home. I went to Thessalonica every year, sometimes even twice a year. If we exclude what was constructed during the last fifteen years, I know it as the top of my palm. I had one of the strangest feelings when I first went to Paris. As the bus entered Paris, after twenty-five hours of making our way through half of snow-blocked Europe, a thought just passed my mind: “I arrived home!” Even now I cannot explain it, at least not rationally. I had that feeling only when I came to a leave from the army, after six months of being away. I woke up at the entrance of Belgrade, saw the “Genex” tower in New Belgrade and, as if in a trance, put my face against the glass with tears coming from my eyes. But, ok, nobody saw. A soldier doesn’t cry! Later I related it with the manner the center of Belgrade was constructed, looking after the Paris triangles, and the fact that both Belgrade and Paris are the cities of Virgin Mary. Perhaps this explanation is “too metaphysical” for some, but either way, the fact is that in both of those cities I feel as if I were at home. How Baš Čelik was tampered. We were growing up in a fortunate time, when you had to put an effort to get to something that really matters to you. Sacrifice something. Not everything was at the reach of our hand or “a click away”. You couldn’t cancel an already scheduled meeting, you couldn’t immediately hear a song that interests you, but had to wait for the record or patiently hunt it on the radio. You had to tell people things eye to eye. This taught us patience and responsibility. It taught us to plan and think, finally to respect each other. We all read, listened and watched. This today, this “instant society”, in which everything is told by typing on the keyboard, has nothing to do with it. Every time has its postulates and its values, but it seems to me that this generation gap is a bit wider than the previous one. Contemporary poets’ society. I discovered poets much later than prose writers. I guess that’s how it goes in life. The entire palette of Serbian poets is important to me. From the long gone, unknown ones, who sang all those epic poems that have fed me since my childhood, to the later ones who

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preserved the national identity and patriotic enthusiasm and never refrained from expressing it. I have been reading again Dučić in the past few months, I know I will also return to Rakić, Đura, Dis, Laza Kostić, Zmaj, Branko... And here is where suddenly He comes up! More than a poet, much more. A role model. Holy Despot Stefan Lazarević! As for the foreign ones... Um, he’s not foreign to me, he is mine! The one and only, the most loved of all poets: Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin! Fatherland. Serbia is my Fatherland. It is a great gift in the XXI century to live in a country you can call Homeland and Fatherland at the same time. Not a single American lives in his Fatherland, nor has the right to call his country that, except for a few Indians that survived. And instead of being proud of our Fatherland, we undermine it. We are foreigners in every other place of the world. This is our only home. In the constellation of the Celts. The legend says that my first word was: Celtic. It was during the Champions Cup finals “Celtic” – “Feyenoord”. At least that’s what my dad claimed. And it wouldn’t be logical if it were different.

My introduction into the world of the Celts simply had to happen. Later it spread in many directions, mainly artistic and historical. From the subconscious vigorous reaction to the melody and meaning of the strange music from the “Dubliners” records, John Renbourn, “Jethro Tull”, the famous third album of “Zeppelin”, to my later serious fascination with “The Pogues”. Their appearance had a crucial influence on everything that later happened with me. This is where the images of brave, joyful Celtic jokesters emerged before me, voracious and good drinkers, great naggers, restless and quarrelsome people, yet endlessly loyal and committed to their families, friends and finally their country, faith and heritage. In brief: the Celts. Of course, this was only the beginning of the road which I took and reached the place we are at the moment. Reflections, relations. Echoes of a long gone past, which I certainly had to explore,

 On Krupajsko Vrelo, Eastern Serbia

 In the colors of “Celtics”: Chess with green figurines

The Call – Besides all those places I’ve already mentioned and often visit, there is another place magically attractive to me: Rtanj. As if it calls me to come. Roots are deep. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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 Son Stefan with a gusle on Kalemegdan Daughter Jovana with a guitar, at a little room concert

 Aca in Trieste with James Joyce, 2010


reached me through these songs. Then, along the way, you meet Miloš Crnjanski and his thoughts about that mystical Serbian-Celtic similarity; Tolkien and Lord of the Rings, a book in which you unmistakably recognize the echo of Serbian mythology and old faith. Then you meet Ranka Kuić, whose epochal work on 5.000 pages about the Serbian-Celtic parallels nobody here found a reason to publish, still standing somewhere in Wales (luckily, the short version, published under the title Red and White, did find its way to those interested in it)... You also meet many others who feel that there is something more than pure consideration towards a geographically so distant, yet so close nation. To make a long story short, it is enough to say that the Serbian and Gaelic languages have about 4.000 words and toponyms in common, from Tara, Juhor, Avala, Dunav, to Era. We share some archetypical rhythms and melodic structures characteristic only for the areas we populate. Of course, we also have in common the famous saying that we love to “eat, drink and make three points for an away win”. Finally, half of Serbia lives in Celtic cities. And don’t forget, we are both afraid of only one thing: of the Sky falling on our heads! My “Fellowship of the Ring”. I like to say that the “Orthodox Celts” band was put together by St. Patrick, Irish St. Sava, personally. How else could you explain that so many different people, at the time when people didn’t know much about Ireland in SRPSK A  БРОЈ 8-9  2014

Serbia, gathered around a single common point: Irish music? And we gathered for a simple reason – it was our way of expression. This is where we felt safe, this is what we were and remained. This goes for everyone that passed through “Orthodox Celts”, and not many band members changed, only when really necessary. I mentioned already that we are all different. Completely. From the music we like to political views and gastronomy. But that’s the point. Each of us brought a part of ourself into the “Celts” and built it into our unique sound. They say there is no such thing as the best guitar player, best singer, best band... There are only those you recognize always and everywhere. And they say that you cannot mix up “Orthodox Celts” with any other band playing such kind of music. That’s our greatest success. Two hours in Dublin. Sounds strange, perhaps even incredible, but I spent only two hours in Ireland! It’s even stranger than those two hours were more than enough for me to confirm everything that made me fall in love with it. Two hours of wandering in the Dublin port and its surrounding were more than three days of riding in some other place. And yes, the confirmation of my earlier conviction that blood is thicker than water came from there! Anti-star. Nick Cave once said: “I’m Nick Cave on the stage, but when I come down, I’m Henry’s dad!” I’m somewhat different: even on stage I’m Stefan’s and Jovana’s dad.

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 Concert at “Beer Fest” in Belgrade, 2014

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The greatest temptation is to remain on stage as you are away from it, not to permit the cheering of the mass elevate and corrupt you. In fact, I’m a real, authentic antistar. I persistently refuse to admit that I’m different from the others only because I’m on stage and watch them from it. These are only moments. However, I’m the same person at the green market, in the schoolyard when we play football, when I take my kids to kindergarten and school, when I’m in a city bus... I do whatever most other people do. It’s sometimes unpleasant when you think you cannot take a walk through Knez holding your wife’s hand without being noticed, but that’s how it is. The few seconds of taking a quick photo means a lot to someone, so who am I to deprive him? And that’s it: the temptation to remain normal, healthy and upright, with both feet firmly on the ground, and the gift that enables you to do what you love most. I’d change, if I could. I don’t think so! Whatever I changed in my life willingly, life itself returned me to complete the lesson. I think that everything that happened was supposed to happen. Finally, if I played differently, it wouldn’t be me.

 A portrait from 2010

My heart stroke me. Yes, literally, on stage. It snapped. Still, I think it’s only a “yellow card”, a sufficient warning to a smart player. It’s not that I’m afraid of going to the other side. But, I know that, if I go too early, my loved ones will be deprived of

Novel – I’d like to find time and write a novel which has been in my mind for years, but I’m aware I’d have to be alone and in peace as long as necessary. What awaits me until then, I cannot even imagine.


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some things they should not be. Therefore I don’t intend to repeat this episode. What new did it bring into my life? Before all, the knowledge that others depend on you much more than you wanted to admit before, that you’re not almighty and that such things don’t happen to “someone else”. That’s why I removed from my life everything that brought me to the border, hoping that I will see that border again in about a hundred years at least. Then we’ll talk about it. “The talking box”. “The radio is the last thing you hear”. The national radio is the first and last voice of a state. If Radio Beograd disappeared, we’d know that the state had disappeared as well. And, heeey, I’ve been in that Radio Belgrade for a quarter of a century. Longer than the “Celts” exist. As much as I’m part of the Radio, after everything we’ve been through, the Radio is also a part of me. I think it can be heard in my shows. That is where I feel at home. Literally. I’m sorry television has become dominant in the speed of launching news, because the radio is naturally a faster media. But this is also coming to its place, just wait. Nine days’ wonder. Reasons for hope, despite everything. Some say that I’m an immoderate optimist and that I’m always positive. I guess that’s my nature. What else could we do? I draw it from everything around me. Life is wonderful, the world is wonderful if we see it that way and take the right point of view. At home, at work, on stage... I do what I love most, in a way I find most convenient, as sincerely as possible, with all my strength, without any reserves, without compromise, I’m surrounded by people I love. What else could one ask for? 

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M o r e

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Gam e


Mischievous Collector of Boomerangs Immediately before the landing of the balloon in which he flew over the Serbian countries


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He started writing wishing that there again are books that will bring back the play of the shadow of fire on the face of the storyteller. He will explain the writer’s tricks, and then everything will be even more mysterious. Writing is for him a filigree work on preparing the fireworks. He says that the words don’t put the magic in motion but help us see it. Children today are the victims of mindless parents’ love, disarmed by being overprotected, trapped in a 2D world. He understands and awakens them, and that is why he is always welcomed as a rock star By: Vesna Kapor

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M o r e  Nature revisited

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e is a writer of mystery and mysterious stories. This is what you will read about him on the internet, but he is much more than that. One can say, without the risk of error, that he is a magical character. His books invariably contain stories that come from Slavic and Serbian mythology. Certainly, he brings also elements of other cultures into them. His storytelling passion is transposed into photographs, through which he also writes stories. Thick fiber of imagination is charmingly descending on everybody who dives into the world of his storytelling. He has changed many professions. Today, as a freelance, he travels, records and changes the world, in the way in which he can: with his talent and belief that that freedom is what we define ourselves. Also, „Uroš Petrović” is known as one of the most intelligent Serbs. He explains his life and his success as „merciless quenching of curiosity”. The first Serbian 3D film was filmed after his novel The Fifth Butterfly. He is not only an author for children, but also a man in a mission. He is constantly on various events through which he is spreading interest for literature for children, as well as culture and history. His encounters with children are more than ordinary classes. By leading the reader through the world of mysterious obstacles, he talks to us about many forgotten terms. He stimulates wisdom, wittiness and honor. By mixing different worlds, he opens up the views and brings back the self-confidence. He was declared the best writer for children in 2013, and at the award ceremony professor Ljuštanović said that children welcome him as a rock star. Writing for children, but really capturing attention of the adults, stimulating their con-

And he stumbles upon a downhill He was born in Gornji Milanovac, lives in Belgrade, but often stays outside this city. He prefers spending time in nature and with children. He is the recipient of numerous awards for children’s literature, and for some of them there were children in the jury (“Dositej’s Quill”, “Neven”, Award of Zmaj’s Children’s Games, “Gordana Brajević”...) and award for a photograph. Books: “Children of Nowhere”, “Mysterious Stories”, “Stories from the Other Side”, “Dark Secrets of Ginkova Street”, “Aven and Jazopas in the Country of Vauk”, “Secrets of the Skills of Marta Smart”, “The Fifth Butterfly”. He is a co-author of program “NTC Learning System”, which stimulates creative and logical thinking and is applied in several countries in Europe.


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sciousness and forcing them to compete with children, is that a writer’s trick or a chance? Sometimes I wander and let myself being led by real or apparent road signs. That is also how I behave in literature. When I write, I don’t know what will happen with the heroes of the novel. Or with the book. Or with me. It has turned out that such a method of writing invariably causes unpredictability of what is written. And such a way of life causes unpredictability of experience. I receive many letters – even the real letters, hand written ones. They are mostly sent by children. Some of them started writing their own books, while others are writing my new books. It is invaluable. I collect boomerangs and I have many, but this one that I described in the previous sentence is the most beautiful one. In many homes, mystery stories have become places around which the entire family would gather, just like they would gather around the fire in the old days. Do you feel this as a responsibility and a mission? The series Mystery Stories was really created with a desire to have books that would bring back the game of the shadows of fire on the face of a storyteller. Of course, nobody expected such a circulation (only the first of ten editions was sold in more than 30,000 copies). I often find a group of children sitting in a park and reading those stories, training their minds. I see my books in social networks – in lists of ten books that have change someone’s life, on family photographs from a summer holiday, bathing in the sun of the Aegean Sea together with the sun screen lotions. It is nice to know: someone somewhere is reading them. WHILE YOU ARE TRYING, IT MAKES SENSE Transferring archetypal images to contemporary young readers obsessed with speed, new media and seemingly uninterested in everything that is connected with tradition, many people compare with the moving of the Sisyphus’ stone. Still, you have found the way? If there were efforts on that road in the beginning, it is obvious that a few years ago I have stumbled upon a long, mellow downhill road. Even if I should withdraw now to the mountain of Tara for a few years, this stone would continue to roll down by itself. Of course, everything under the sun has the

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Serbia Described with Light In addition to literature, you are involved in photography, design, illustration... Can we say that it is your way of spreading the story about Serbia as a place of origin and positive values? My photographs of Serbia have been seen by a few million people, but I think that I would be making them only so that they existed. It is still recording of lights, it even sounds noble. It has happened that people would visit Serbia thanks to the photographs I have published in the internet.

same number of ups and downs, so I am prepared to the opposite angle of the road. I am not looking forward to it, but it does not frighten me. Very early I have realized that the point is not the destination but the journey – everybody has heard this, but very few of them have understood it. And there are even fewer of those who at least partially apply this to their lives It is not easy to figure it out, it seems to me that people are spending much more energy lamenting over their misfortune than quite natural striving toward a turning point. All cocoons are made of fragile materials, although they don’t look like it. They are made so that they could be broken one day and create a new life. Everybody should find the way to break them into little pieces. And for as long as you are trying, the time given to you makes sense. Fantasy and mythology create the basis for your literary forms, but, the way in which you are building the worlds of your books, on the other hand, borders by means of some invisible shunt, with futuristic visions. Is that the key that opens the current world of the readers? I don’t write according to a synopsis. I see the writing process as a filigree work on preparation of fireworks. The reward is at the end. Sometimes the readers write to me, saying that my sentences were beating in their veins, as if they had lived them. One of the secrets is that I rarely describe an action that I have not experienced myself in some form or another. Going down the cascades of cold mountain river – I experienced it, I have a scar as a memory. Flying in a balloon – experienced, the consequence of the first award at the photography competition. Running away from wild mammals – still a fresh

memory from Rtanj. Gold rinsing, horse riding, searching for buried artifacts and truffles, leech hunt, hawthorn injury, spending the night in a cave, all that has been experienced – I know how much it all hurts and how it can be loved. Of course, I weave all this into something imaginary, trying to have that go through experience, at least mentally.

 Recording images into light (Photo: Meyer Malner)

CRUCIAL DOSE OF FREEDOM Entering literature and surviving in it, with joy. How much skill and work does it take? It takes a lot of both skill and work. Still, I cannot fight the lust to look at all this from an angle: I was also very lucky. You see many good consequence only when you look back. Only now I know how important all those turning caused by curiosity meant to me, all those lessons I have learned although I didn’t have to – maybe even more than those that I did have to learn. How do you measure this moment and childhood of your children in comparison with your own? Paradoxically, at the time of expansion of 3D technology, adventures of children’s growing up are reduced more and more to 2D, to screens. We had a 3D childhood, screens were then tied. By analogy, maybe this today is a tied up childhood! And maybe it is human evolution, a step from those lying down big people from film Voli. Generally, I was very early treated with a large dose of freedom, and that is the first condition for development of creativity. There is no stepping out without the possibility to make such a step, and there are no great adventures without the first step. I was lucky with growing up – I was not restricted in making the first steps. Today, out of mindless love, we overprotected our children and, paradoxically, disabled them from having

Four Lucky Concussions You bring together mythology and history of various periods and nations, and still you bring the reader to one level they would not forget their own, and at the same time it is all twisted together into a diversity, on a cosmological scale... I guess that diversity of motives is proportionate to the richness in one’s head. When I want to make a joke, I say that as a child I had four concussions – it seems that a lot has been crosswired in this misfortune. When I don’t want to make a joke, I say the same.

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 How to fish a good story

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the real childhood, like the one we had. Recently, we have taken city children, upon a secret agreement with their parents and Jovan Memedović, to a wilderness on Tara Mountain, to make fire, eat mushrooms and snails, walk barefoot on in the mud and bathe in a mountain lake. We surprised them, but they also surprised us. You will see! Is your literary world an allusion of Serbia, the Balkans? That is my surrounding, although seemingly displaced above the earth, into the past, depth, magical. It was interesting in one meeting of Serbian and Norwegian writers where I participated. We were envious of one another – we envied them for the richness of their environment, they were envious of us for the richness of the topics of our habitat. Balkan is an inexhaustible source of events, everything

Different Approach to Education – I was a president of Mensa for a few years, but now I am involved exclusively with children, especially talented ones. Together with Ranko Rajović, I give lectures to teachers and educators about our “NTC System” of learning in many kindergartens, schools and universities in the country and abroad. We have made a real breakthrough in a different approach to education. No doubt, a child gives up learning, even playing, only in case when what is offered is not sufficiently interesting and inspiring. Otherwise there is no limit in what, how quickly and successfully something can be mastered. The same goes for adults, as we usually call children with many decades of service.


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is rash and capricious. There is abundance of topics, and we are in want of everything else. Is it possible to talk about inspiration as an initial moment in creation, or is it irrelevant in the modern world of the media and technology? Inspiration is everything, and I must admit that sometimes a spark of an idea also comes from the screen. Technology that has conquered our senses is not only alienation and shortcut to superficiality. Today, I can afford to, in only two seconds, listen to the best musical compositions ever written, even in the most luxurious of performances! Only royal families were able to afford that until recently, and even them only sporadically! I want to write a few sentences while listening to Mozart? To seconds for that magic! I want to learn how „Vespa” got its name? Again, two seconds! We have all been given magic bowl, and almost free of charge. Of course, this gifts hides some by-products and a lot of unwanted material. MAGIC IS EVERYWHERE AROUND US You travel often: literary encounters, art colonies, working with children.... How important is that act of encounter with others? That is how I have imagined life. It is a big question whether anything exists in this world if it is not in relation to something else. There is only something to someone. The rest is nothing.

In addition to the storyline, which is always a riddle, there are also interesting anthroponyms and toponyms in your novels. Are they also a part of the answer? I like to hide. In words, photographs, drawings, even in life. In each one of my books there are still unfathomed mysteries. Although it has been more than a decade since the publishing of my first novel Aven and Jazopas in the Country of Vauk, nobody has been able to decipher the manner in which I named my characters. Here is an example: the smartest being in my novel is Penvir, a fish-like creature suspected to be of extra-terrestrial origin – he was named in such a manner that a few syllables were taken out of the name of one of more than famous ancient settlement – LePENski VIR. It even resembles the famous artifacts that were found there. Also, in the novel The Children of Nowhere there are symbols that separate paragraphs – nobody has understood their meaning, although this book already has a five digit number of owners and readers. Do real life and literary fiction sometimes overlap? It happens to me and I don’t think it happens by chance. A few weeks after the publishing of the book Dark Secrets of Ginkova Street, at the end of which the main hero gets a chance to fly in a balloon, I also receive the first prize at the big photography competi-

tion – flying in a balloon over Belgrade. Generally, books about the green-haired girl Marta were reflected, in a strange set of circumstances, one real Marta who, miraculously, was dyeing her hair green. It is a rare name here and could have been a coincidence, but in combination with green hair – it is a little too much. It is normal that, at least subconsciously, you describe in a book what has happened to you. The opposite also often happens to me, and I will have to be careful what I write. Magical words are... Everything magical is already here, around us! Take a look at least once at a spring or waterfall, stay silent for a few minutes and think well about what you are standing before. Magical words have never caused magic, they have always only helped us see it.

 Rinsing gold on the Pek River

Photographs: Archive of Uroš Petrović

Intermediate Stop of the Fifth Butterfly In all of your books one can feel the winds of intermediate worlds, as if it is possible to touch the world of our dreams: eternity. Is that what you actually live? One of the first stories I have written is called “Intermediate Stop”. I was awarded for it, and also awarded novel “The Fifth Butterfly” was made after it, while Radio Belgrade produced a radio drama after this novel, and also after which the shooting of the first 3D feature film in the history of Serbian film has been recently completed. Intermediate spaces make borders meaningless, they are interesting, like cords with selected tones from the harmonies of diverse surroundings.

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Life Made of Stories


Every dwarf in the village knew some kind of crafts. To patch fishermen’s nets with moonlight threads, for example. Or to make magic potions. Or to excavate diamonds in caves. Only Vretenko was sitting down telling stories all day long. Nobody believed in those stories but him, but everybody would leave their work and come to listen to him. This made the village head very angry. And then one day, the king announced that he would give his daughter and half the kingdom to the person who tells the most beautiful story. It was the opportunity of a lifetime for Vretenko By: Nebojša Jevrić


ka and I are learning to count. There are two eyes. Five fingers. Seven dwarfs. “Dad, and where is the eighth dwarf?” Ika asks. Dad would not be the dad if he didn’t know where the eighth dwarf was. Still, startled, I say that I don’t know. But Ika is already waiting at the corner with a new question. “And why don’t you know?” Now, this cannot be helped. “And what is his name?” Ika doesn’t give up. “His name is Vretenko”, I say. When we go to bed and turn off the light, Ika outs her finger in her mouth and gives an order: “Dad, talk about Vretenko!” And I talk. I talk to Ika for fourteen nights, and on the fifteenth night I sit down and write it down, so that other children can hear it too. OPEN SEA ON THE FAIRY’S WATER It was at the time when dwarfs and elves were ruling the earth. When there was no snow or storms. When Azri Daut, the Gypsy king, was forging and turning iron into gold. When dwarfs, with their heads sunk in pillows filled with feathers of angels, were dreaming the most beautiful dreams.

When, while sitting on the shoulder of Scary the Horrible, the fire hen was cackling fairytales all day long. And when the king of the dwarfs was about to give his daughter to marry the one who tells the most beautiful fairytale. It was the time when it was still possible to buy magic beans in the market, the one that grows as high as the sky. And fire birds were still stealing golden apples from palace gardens, and princes were killing terrible dragons on Rumija and Lovćen. So, in those times, the dwarf called Vretenko lived. Vretenko didn’t like any crafts. He was just sitting down all day long and coming up with stories. Nobody believed in those stories but him, but when he would start telling the stories, everybody would come to listen. The other dwarfs were patching up fishermen’s nets with moon threads, mixing the magic potions excavating diamonds, which were there possible to find in every cave, and Vretenko was just sitting around, all day long, and telling stories. “Ah, woe is me! Nothing will ever become of you!” his good mother was mourning all day long. “Our little house is about to collapse, there is nothing in it but wild strawberries, and you are talking and talking.” Vretenko put a hat with pheasant’s feather on his head, on which a butterfly landed, and Illustration: Predrag two little wreaths with magical herbs, and conTodorović tinued telling stories. SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


F a i r y t a l e Vretenko, the only dwarf who did not have any craft, made the village head very angry. It was a dry year and forest fruits that were the staple diet of the dwarfs were scarce. There was less food, a Vretenko was still sitting and talking. Then other dwarfs would put down the useful work and come to listen to him. “It is not because he is not working”, the Grumpy grumbled, “but because he wouldn’t let other dwarfs work.” One day, when Vretenko was already fed up listening to people whining, he said: “You say that nothing will become of me. It will, it will, although there is nothing I can do but tell stories. I have heard that our king would give the hand of his daughter to the person who tells the most beautiful story, and half the kingdom on top. I am going to the court and I will become the king.” The entire village was laughing when Vretenko took off toward the royal palace, with a mace made of bumblebee’s wings over his shoulder and a sword made of deer’s horn on his belt. He walk for a long or maybe short time, arrived a distant or maybe close place, only, at the twilight, he stopped near a mill wheel in the creek where fairies used to come to bathe. When he woke up it was midnight. There was a full moon on the sky, and two fairies were arguing near the creek. They came for bathing and forgot to bring basil. And fairies never bathe without basil, because water in which basil was dipped guards them from evil eyes. Vretenko woke up in an instant and addresses them politely. “You are the only human who has witnessed the bathing of fairies. For this reason, take some of this water in a pot. Fairy water makes every wound heal, even the one that brings death.” That moment the roosters cried, and the fairies flew away. ON EAGLE’S WING UNTIL NEXT YEAR Vretenko takes water into the pot, ties his shoes, and continues his journey. “Ah, when I tell this in my village, nobody will believe that I spend a night in the company of fairies”, he thought. The road then led him to marshland. He makes a boat from walnut shell, takes a pigeon’s feather as a paddle, and in this way he crosses the marshland. Then he comes to rocks, climbs by using cobweb, and so he


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overcomes that obstacle as well. The big city was far away, and in it there was the palace in which the princess lived, and that is where dwarf Vretenko was heading. After some time he sat down to have some rest and to have some wild strawberries to refresh. He was at the beginning of a great forest. He was siting and eating, when suddenly something squeaked from the bushes. He ran over there and there was something to see: the golden mountain eagle was lying there, pierced with an arrow, in a pool of blood. He was dying. “Don’t be afraid”, the dwarf whispered to him. “I will save you.” And he bravely comes close to the golden eagle, the greatest enemy of dwarfs, and takes the arrow out of his chest. Then he opens the water bottle with fairy water and sprinkles the wound with it. Sprinkled with magical fairy water, the wound disappeared as if it had never been there. The lord of the mountain peaks was now standing on front of Vretenko, the golden eagle, well known to the dwarf, because he was causing panic in his village. Every year the golden eagle would catch a careless dwarf. And Vretenko was now standing in front of him, looking him straight into the eyes. No dwarf has ever been so close to a golden eagle. “You saved my life. I promise there will never again be a war between my people and yours. A golden eagle will never again eat a dwarf. And you will be my blood brother.” The two of them were sitting like this for a while, and then Vretenko told to his blood brother where he was coming from and why he was going to the big city, and then he stood up to leave, because a long journey was ahead of him. The golden eagle laughed sourly at it. “The journey is long for your legs, but not for my wings. So, climb up, my blood brother, so that we can reach the big city before dark.” Vretenko then bravely sat in between the eagle’s wings and they took off. Eh, Vretenko would give anything so that his dwarfs from the village could see him, those who always laughed at him, to see how he is flying above the mountain peaks on the back of the lord of the skies. How he put his arms around the terrible golden eagle, who is feared by the dwarfs more than anything else. And so he arrived at his destination. And what happened next, you will find out next year. If you are good. 

W o r l d s


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Ancient layers of Europe and Australia intertwine in her, white and black, ballads and cabaret, Serbs and Aborigines. Voices from far away reach us through her. She was Daisy in blockbuster “Australia”, alongside Nicole Kidman. She performed in Sidney Opera and “Carnegie Hall”. And she was raised by her father Slobodan Yovich, born in the village of Brodac near Bijelјina, a mason. Through Facebook she has found her relatives in Semberija, but she has not managed to visit them yet. Her dream is to bring them all together, from all continents, and she will certainly make this come true

By: Sandra Miletić


rsula Yovich’s life is unusual in many respects. She was born to a Serbian-Aboriginal family in the little town of Darwin, at the far north of Australia. Her father Slobodan Yovich left the little hamlet of Jelaz in the village of Brodac in Bijeljina in the 1970’s and went to the far away Australia. There he became Sten Yovich and married Pauline Mirilman, an Aboriginal. They had four children, but their marriage soon fell apart and Slobodan was left alone with the little ones. That is how Ursula, “in her motherland” grew up with her Serbian father. She spent her childhood be-

tween Darwin and Maningrida, where her mother’s family lived. In those years she wanted to “become famous”. A talented actress, jazz and blues singer, today thirty six years old, is respected in Australia, the country of her birth, and around the world. Those who are familiar with arts, theatre and music, are always thrilled with her interpretations. LED BY HER VOICE After Pauline’s departure, many things in the life of Yovich family and life of eight years old Ursula changed. Slobodan, who SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014

Photographs: Archive of Ursula Yovich


W o r l d s worked as a mason, had difficult time with four children. Still, Ursula says, he was able to manage all difficulties in life. He called his children in Serbian as “pile” (chick) and “sine” (son). When she was thirteen, Ursula began to sing. She would turn her room into a stage and pretend to be a music star. Realizing that his daughter is talented and that she “had good voice”, Slobodan gave her full support and enrolled her in children’s theatre “Corrugated Iron Youth Theatre”. Ursula soon became well known in Darwin as “the girl who can sing”. Later she would say that, as a grown-up, she would meet her school friends who would admit to her that they didn’t know her real name, so they called her Whitney. At the age of sixteen, she enrolled in a college in Darwin, and the turning point in her life was in 1996 when, after an audition, she was admitted to the center of Aboriginal Applied Arts in Perth. The Center was visited by famous Australian director Neil Armfield, searching for young Aboriginal actors. Only a little while later, Ursula found herself in Sidney, in Armfield’s production of The Governor’s Family. After this, roles in theatre, television and film strung up one after the other. LEARNING TO LOVE – I have always wanted to sing, it is what drives me, but I ended up working in theatre. So far I have worked in over thirty theatre productions, with some of the leading companies in Australia – Ursula says for National Review. – My love with theatre was not at first sight. I worked hard and really learned to love it. I also love people who I work with. The stories we tell in the productions are often very important. Serbian audience knows Ursula mostly as daisy from blockbuster Australia, where she acted alongside her famous countrymen Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman. She acted in $9.99, Arcadia and My Bed Your Bed.

A Ray of Light Little is known in Australia about Aboriginal culture, life and past, she says. She is also astonished by a large number of people who still “don’t know the true nature of development of Australia” and hard life of the Aborigines. – In film “Australia” we have shown some of it in a way. But a long road is still ahead of us. Films like this help in a small but important way – Ursula says.


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Revelation – Magpie Blues is a very personal story, which revealed me before myself. Thanks to this, I was able to see myself in the ways in which I generally wouldn’t – Ursula says for National Review.

She was nominated for theatre award “Helpmann” (the Australian equivalent to American “Tony”) three times, and she won it 2007 for her role in the production of Capricornia. She won, among others, awards of the Australian Film Committee, “Tudawali” Film and TV Award, and in 1998 the award for award for most promising actress. “Helpmann Award” is her favorite, she says. – I didn’t expect to be awarded at all, so it was a great surprise. I like this award because I received it thanks to the votes of my peers. I am proud when I know that people think that what I do is really worth something – Ursula says. When we talked, she was working on theatre production of The Secret River, at The Sydney Theatre Company. – It is an adaptation of a book by Kate Greenville about the contact of British settlers (convicts) with Aboriginal people Daruga in Australia in 1813. A tragic story. As you know, history of Australia is pretty gloomy – Ursula says. – I have also appeared recently in two TV programs in Australia – Devil’s Dust and Redfern Now – as well as in God’s of Wheat Street, the new five-episode drama on ABC. She is also active in music. She recorded her first jazz songs more than seventeen years ago. Since then, she has published about a dozen albums, the last one being Ursula Yovich Live Album 2010. It is difficult to list all the festivals in which she participated. In addition to her appearance in the Sydney Opera, Ursula can also laud herself with appearances in Carnegie Gall in New York, and concert hall of Queen Elizabeth in London. “MAGPIE BLUES” AND STORIES ABOUT ORIGIN Searching for the ways to combine different cultures of her parents, in 2010 Ursula made cabaret performance Magpie Blues.

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Magpie is the nickname given to Ursula when she was still a girl by her mother. That bird has black and white feathers, the colors that Ursula combines in herself. This cabaret, with which she appeared in the Sidney Opera three nights in a raw, Ursula sees as the greatest success in her career. She told her life story in the form of a musical saga: about the life of her family, the union of Serbian and Aboriginal culture, about the love between her mother and father, about their four children. The story is accompanied by original songs that speak about Ursula’s growing up and struggles to find herself between two completely different cultures, her dream to become a singer an effort to find her Serbian roots. The production brought numerous audiences to tears, and Ursula herself does not hide emotions during the performance. – In the beginning it was difficult to talk about personal issues. Still, I have fifteen years of experience in working on stories about the Aborigines, also very heart-stirring. I was well prepared when I was doing the Magpie Blues, relying on my personal and professional experience. Although she proudly says that she is an Aborigine and Serb, she feels sorry, she says, because she knows very little about the cultures of her parents. With so many obligations, Slobodan did not have time to teach his children Serbian culture, and he always insisted that his children speak English language. When she started school, she spoke her mother tongue – Burarra language, and English with Serbian accent. – Unfortunately, I don’t speak Serbian well enough today. I am always so busy and I didn’t have a chance to take Serbian language classes, but that is on my “to do” list. I know that my father would like me to speak Serbian with him, even if not fluently. That is why the ceremony of the Day of Mitropoly in Sidney, in September 2011, was a special day for her. She was touched by the welcome arranged for her by the Serbs and she sang to them the Hymn to St. Sava, which, she says, reminds her of her childhood in Darwin. Namely, she learned and sang this hymn in the church choir of Serbian Sunday school in this town.

– I remembered this song and I was very excited for having a chance to sing it. I found a collection of CD’s with Serbian songs and I listen to them all the time. I hope that when I go to Serbia and Srpska one day I will be able to sing more songs in Serbian – Ursula says. IMPORTANCE OF SELF-RESPECT Ursula is married to a lawyer, Stewart O’Connell. Her husband and six years old daughter Djarla, she says, are her greatest love and accomplishment. – I like being a mom, watching my daughter grow up, that wonderful little being. The most important thing I am going to pass on to Djarla is to approach everything with greatest dignity, to be moderate in everything, loved and respected by others. Self-respect is of great importance. Her greatest which, she says, is large family gathering, because she has never seen her relatives in Serbia. A few times she planned to go, but business obligations prevented her. – I would like to visit my family there, but there has been no opportunity. My father never returned to his home since he left it in the early 1970’s. I would have three brothers who live in the village of Brodac. We are in touch through Facebook, but we don’t talk to one another as much as I would like to – Ursula says. Today she lives in Adelaide. – I have achieved much more than I ever hooped to achieve, but as I am growing mature, my dreams also become bigger, and I have so much more to do. And at the end, Ursula sends this message to the readers of National Review: – Always do what makes you happy, but without jeopardizing other people’s happiness. 

Barefoot and the Sky Ursula is also a part of the project called Barefoot Divas. – I like to sing barefoot on the stage. Connection with the ground is very important for me. This show is a concert of six talented female singers who tell their stories through songs and words. We were all born in Australia, but we come from different ethnic groups. There is a Maori woman from New Zealand, an Aborigine and Roma, as well as a singer from Papua New Guinea, and we sing about culture, family and country, in English or in our languages – Ursula tells us.

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Reading the Game, Following the Signs Sport is the measure of our character. Those who are not persistent and brave, who is hesitant, will soon be drowned in this struggle. The award made me equally surprised and happy. It also shows that I have made an excellent move coming from Belgrade to Laktaši, from “Partizan” to “Igokoea”, despite the fact that most people didn’t think so. I was in the right place at the right moment. I was given sufficient space to play. The wandering stopped, and the road opened up in front of me. I grew as a player and as a person. Now I am a step ahead. There are many other things that need to be done By: Dejan Bulajić



he best athlete of the Republic of Srpska in 2014 is basketball player Nemanja Gordić. Kind of a sports immigrant, he has deserved high recognition with his game at home, in the jersey of “Igokea”. After a shorter interruption in his career, the stay in Laktaši proved to be the best decision, because it gave him a chance to prove himself SRPSK A  БРОЈ 8-9  2014

again and regain self-confidence. No matter how much he is aware that he has a successful season behind him, he still did not expect this award. – It came as a great surprise for me. Honestly, I wasn’t even thinking about the award, until a few days before the announcement I they called me and told me

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Behind Everything – Looking from the outside, everything seems to be quite idyllic: rich clubs, expensive contracts, media attention. However, the background of it all is the strenuous rhythm of preparations, trainings and competitions, which exhaust you up to your limits, physically and mentally. It is really not easy to handle, so problems with injuries have become a part of a daily life, and this is the worst aspect of the sport. I think that people who work in clubs understand this phenomenon and because of this they offer to the best players the contracts for which we think are contrary to the common sense.

 Coming to Laktaši was the key move in his career


that I was short-listed. It has made me really happy, because it confirmed that I had done something right during the year. And it is especially important because it proved that I had made an excellent move by transferring from “Partizan” to “Igokea”. Many interpreted this as a step back in my career, but I didn’t see it that way. I knew that “Igokea” was one of the road signs that I had to follow. It has turned out that I was in the right place at the right moment. Nemanja was born in Mostar, but because of the war, while he was still a child, his family moved to, where his parents still live. – Of course, from the first they I have been getting the greatest support from my family. It is especially important for me that I have never been exposed to any pressure from their side, or attempts to influence my decisions. They have always supported me and accepted everything I did. Today young players are under great pressure from different sides. Unfortunately, parents participate in this, consciously or unconsciously. It is not easy to bear. He started building his career in “Budućnost”, in Podgorica. His first appearances in the senior team already showed that he would soon get one of the leading roles. Life took him from Podgorica to Rome, where he played two years for “Lottomatica”. After a short episode in Ukrainian “Azovmash”, he put on the jersey of “Partizan”, with which he won the Adriatic and First league of Serbia. – We all start practicing sport for love. I gladly remember my first days, because then it was still only a game, which I enjoyed with no pressure. We should not give up the fact that even today it is still a kind of a game, but when you grow over some basic levels and plunge into professionalism, it soon becomes the work that you do. And more, it is a work that carries a lot of SRPSK A  БРОЈ 8-9  2014

stress and is exhausting you physically and mentally. I know that it is no longer that old feeling when you go out on the field with your buddies to relax and have fun, but despite all the strict obligations and pressure that arise from this, I try to still enjoy it because, after all, it is what I love. ROADS OF VARIOUS TALENTS What would you recommend to young generations – to get involved in sport professionally or as a recreation? – I am not sure that I should give an advice like that to anybody. These should always be personal decisions, no matter how young boys and girls are and maybe too young to make long-term plans. If somebody recognizes talent in themselves and great desire, they will be prepared to go on. They must know that there are great challenges waiting ahead and strains they could not imagine existed. Also, they must be ready to turn their backs to some other interests, in which they would maybe

also prove themselves as successful people. There are many more of those who, on such a crossroad, stopped and turned to a different direction, following the road of other talents. The most important thing is that in such a moment nobody has a decisive influence on the decision of a young man, especially not parents who unfortunately, in recent times, exert too much influence on ambitions of their children. It seems difficult for talented people, and athletes especially, to come to the fore. – It is never the result of work and talent only. Many other factors must be at play. Simply speaking, you must be in the right place at the right time. It is important that in the period of maturing you also find good trainers who will recognize your abilities and help you grow as a good quality player. With the necessary those of luck, a lot of work, talent and intellect, you will be able to stand out from being average and impose yourself for the main stage. Judging by the past year, his career is yet about to develop in the right direction.

– After a few years of wandering, I finally made some right decisions. I spent the last season in “Igokea” and that was the right call. I was really given sufficient space to play, which is most important for a player, in order to build routine and self-confidence. I had a wonderful time in Laktaši, in the court and outside, and I was practically regenerated as a player. Also, I think I made the right call by, after this, coming to one excellently organized club such as “Cedevita”, with great infrastructure, excellent trainer. Here I have all the conditions to grow.

Injuries and Lessons – In the beginning, while I was in “Budućnost”, on several occasions the injuries prevented me to move on. At the time I was desperate about this, but today I also see positive things in everything. Before all, situations like these make you stronger and finally you realize that what seemed bad to you at first has actually brought something good as well, some useful experience, taught you about patience and persistence. Anyway, I am still young and all this will help me achieve what I want in my career.

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 Series of hits into the heart of things

The fact that he was proclaimed the best athlete in the past year means a lot not only to him but also those who would want to popularize sport in the Republic of Srpska. – Just like in many other places, in Srpska there are much greater worries than sport. Some priorities need to be solved, and only then one can think about investing in sport. Without this, no real breakthrough could be expected. Until sufficient funds become available, investments in clubs and facilities, one cannot count on a serious training process, and therefore it is not possible to expect some special results. As for the talents, I don’t doubt that they exits and that in various sports boys and girls from the Republic of Srpska could excel. NOT EVERYTHING IS MILK AND HONEY Impressions about Euroleague and NBA. – Euroleague is undoubtedly the very top of European basketball. Conditions for playing, halls, referees, teams and players, it is all at the highest level. However, the NBA League is still on the top. In this, I think about the play-off, because in the league part, because of a large number of games, many matches are played without some special fervor. But, with everything taken into account, the NBA is the top of world basketball, a step above Euroleague. Nemanja’s experience with the national team is not insignificant. He already wore the jersey of Bosnia and Herzegovina in some prestigious competitions. – We have a good team, great potential, provided all the players respond to the call. We played at two European championships. At the last one we were not so fortunate, we were taken out of the group, although we had had three victories and two defeats. I only hope that this will be paid back to us at one of the future com-

Commitment – I dedicate my free time to basketball. When I am not in the court, or traveling, then I spend most of the time watching basketball games. I am especially interested in Euroleague and the NBA. I want to follow how my sport develops, to discover novelties in it and maybe implement them in my games. For everything else, there is little time, although I don’t lack interest in music and film. But their turn comes only after the end of a season.


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petitions, if we first deserve this with great work and quality, which always depends on whether we are complete or not. Your opinion about the Serbian national team. – It is very important that excellent professional headquarters were made. Anyway, their quality is confirmed by the result they have achieved. Of course, selector Saša Đorđević and the players are in the center of attention, but the credit does not go only to them. It also goes to all those who enabled them to have excellent conditions for work and good atmosphere. I sincerely hope that all this will last long. Nemanja is cautious when asked about the further development of his career. – I am not one of those who look far ahead. I live day by day, from one training to the next. It means a lot to me that we have an excellent trainer, who is completely dedicated to us, and in each training we encounter something new. The team is working well and I feel great in it, so I hope that we will show how much we are worth, as a team and as individual, through good results. I believe that this is also the way for me to show how much I can do, just as I believe that I still have enough space to grow as a player and that I will achieve this. Sport has given a lot to him, and it also helped him define the outlines of his own character. – Sport generally has the way to show peoples’ characters. Individuals with strong personal traits today have more chance to achieve significant results in sports. Not everything among us is milk and honey, there are many problems and obstacles, and those who are not persistent and arte hesitant will not survive long in that battle. I am relatively young, but I have experienced many different things that have made me stronger and defined some of my human qualities. Also, sport has given me the opportunity to travel a lot and visit many countries. In some of them I lived, became familiar with the differences of their culture and way of life, which means a lot to me and fills me with pleasure. Not only in the court, but in everything we experience outside the court, we all learn, become more complete and, I hope, better people. 

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H e a l t h


To stimulate people to raise the quality of their lives, make it more beautiful and cheerful. To show them what role the medicine can have in this. To point out that many things should be thought about in time and that the most important beauty comes from us. These are the frameworks for this unusual and very successful project in Vrnjačka Banja


eauty and health had the central place in Vrnjačka Banja at the end of 2014. It was then that the project called “The Month of Esthetics”, one of the most interesting and most striking campaigns for improvement of health and beauty, was organized in Special Hospital


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“Merkur”. “Merkur” has realized this campaign together with its VIP friends who used the services of the Centre of Medical Esthetics, believing that their example and the effects of their stay in “Merkur” will also be stimulating for others. They believed that changes would be inspired in

the minds of the people that will increase the quality of their lives, making it more beautiful and cheerful. And this is exactly the most important aspect of “Merkur’s” mission, summarized in the slogan “Be Health”. The goal of “Merkur’s” creative team, as we have already announced, was to, within a month long event, in cooperation with famous people from public life and with strong media support, send to people messages about significance of healthy lifestyle and prevention, to show them how medicine can support their activities on preserving and improving health and beauty, to show them that superb effects can also be achieved through entertainment, recreation and active participation in discovering the beauty of nature, city, people. The Centre of Medical Esthetics, new in “Merkur”, brings together programs of balancing body weight, body shaping, anticellulite and relax program. These programs are a combination of medicine, procedures with contemporary devices, physical activity, education and entertainment. All programs are personalized in every segment, starting from diet that is designed for every person individually, to physical activity and other treatments. Every patient, at the beginning of their stay, would receive their personal therapist and personal trainers, who are available

at all times and who take care about the realization of their programs. Guests may swim in the pool with thermal-mineral water, use the sauna, anti-cellulite services, radio frequency, lymphatic drainage, face and body treatments, various types of massages. MUCH CHEAPER BUT BETTER VIP participants of the “Month of Esthetics” had a chance to become convinced in the effectiveness of such approach and feel the benefits of esthetic programs supported by medicine. They were actors, singers, journalists, artists... Let us mention at least some of them: Milica Milša and Žarko Jokanović, Suzana Mančić, singers Tijana Dapčević and Jelena, Nigor Montenigers and Ajs Negrutin, actor Nenad Okanović, designer Vladana Veljković, TV hosts Nenad Škundrić and Vlada Stanojević, karateka Sanja Petrović, the best Serbian boxer Aleksandar Drenovak...

Special Possibilities Exclusivity in the “Month of Esthetics” were the most advanced anti-aging treatments, such as mesotherapy, correction of mimic wrinkles of all facial regions with Botox, skin tightening, chemical peels for removal or irregularities and scars, filling of facial wrinkles with dermal fillers, lip augmentation with dermal fillers, peloid...

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H e a l t h

Everybody enjoyed the treatments and procedures of the Centre of Medical Esthetics, and they have seen that prices are up to ten times as low against the competition - European centers, for the same quality of service. At the time when everybody is getting ready for the New Year’s Eve, the Centre of Medical Esthetics helped the VIP participants to shine in that night. At the fashion event “Magic night”, organized during the “Month of Esthetics”, proposals for New Year’s Eve outlets were presented. New

Serbia’s Best Trump Card The best known global travel guide book Lonely Planet proclaimed Serbia as one of top ten “Best to Visit” destinations in 2015. As one of three strongest trump cards of Serbia, Lonely Planet also mentions spa centers in Vrnjačka Banja. It is another confirmation of good wok of “Merkur”, which is, in the competition of the most famous spa centers in the world, competing with the most advanced medicine and creativity.


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Year’s arrangements were attractive to foreign guests who enjoyed in “Merkur”. Most foreigners are coming from Bulgaria. It is a tradition for them to spend the New Year’s Eve and the first days of the new year in “Merkur”. In order to make their stay even more interesting, “Merkur” also prepared for its VIP participants a cinema room with top quality sound. This sound was secured thanks to the equipment of “Auris Audio” from Kruševac, a partner of the “Month of Esthetics”. At the Fair of Musical Instruments in Munich this year, this equipment and the bidder were among the best three. Even armchairs at the cinema were with a device for massage, so the guests enjoyed movies in a completely new manner. 

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Shoulder to Shoulder with the Best

Having won the BSC “Hall of Fame” Award, “M:tel” again proved that it is in the circle of most |successful companies, applying business standards recognized worldwide. Thanks to this, Bosnia and Herzegovina has been included forty times in the prestigious “Palladium’s” map of the states in which companies with the best strategies operate


t the great event I Boston, on October 29, 2014, in worldwide competition, “M:tel” received the prestigious “Hall of Fame” Award for exceptional results in applying business strategy according to Balanced Scorecard (BSC) methodology. The award ceremony marked the opening of the fifteenth annual conference organized by “Palladium Group”. This award confirms successful application of the methodology, strategy and strategic focus of the company, which is even more significant if we take into account that the BSC has been one of the most important concepts of management in the past seventy five years. General Manager of “Palladium” John MacLellan emphasized on this occasion that being included in the BSC “Hall of

Model of Success “Palladium” is an organization founded by creators of the BSC methodology, David P. Norton and Robert S. Kaplan, professor at the prestigious Harvard University. The goal of the methodology is a strategically focused organization, and it is implemented by the most successful global companies. Being admitted into the BSC “Hall of Fame” confirms that “M:tel” belongs to the group of companies with the best strategies in the world. “M:tel” will be presented as a model of success in the next edition of magazine “Harvard Business Review”.


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Fame” means receiving a global recognition that is awarded to a very small number of organizations, those with achieved superb results in operation with the use of Norton-Kaplan strategic management system. This year, fourteen organizations from twelve countries and five continents received the award. Among others, this prestigious recognition has been awarded to: “AT&T Canada”, “Turkcell Superonline”, “Mobistar”, “Motorola”, “Simens” (“Information & Communication Mobile”), “Cysco Systems Inc.”, “BMW”, “VW Brazil”, “TATA Motors India”, “Saatchi & Saatchi”, “Hilton”, “Canon USA”... BY THE HIGHEST STANDARDS – In Boston, “M:tel” became a part of the business elite consisting of 194 organizations from 40 countries around the world, including big corporations, government and non-governmental organizations. It is a special pleasure to receive such a confirmation of success, and stand shoulder to shoulder with the best organizations in the world, whose scale of success has been set very high –Goran Vlaović, General Manager of “M:tel”, says, emphasizing that permanent membership in the “Hall of Fame” and the recognition of “Palladium” are proof that the strategy

of his company is fully in accordance with the most recognized methodology in the world, which confirms the quality of strategic management in it. – Thanks to professors Norton and Kaplan and “Palladium Group”, who have recognized our efforts to successfully implement the best methodology in the area of strategic management and come even closer to successful global companies. Today it is clear that changes in the market require a change of business models, which is especially important in the area of telecommunications. This is the area of extremely fast changes, and an efficient strategy and implementation of most advanced standards have become crucial, if you want to survive in a long term. Although it operates in a country burdened with social and economic problems and turbulent history, Vlaović said, “M:tel” in Bosnia and Herzegovina provides services like the biggest global telecommunication companies. In the past few years, “M:tel” has broken numerous business records in Balkan terms, by implementing the most advanced technologies and achieving the best financial results in its branch in B&H. All this would not be possible without an efficient strategic management. Application of BSC methodology is the basis for “M:tel” for raising the level of business success month after month. – According to our knowledge, “M:tel” is the only company in B&H that implements the BSC methodology – Vlaović says. – In that context, this award will be a stimulus

not only for us, but also for other companies in B&H, which will, we believe, follow our example, which will lead to improvement of business and life in our region. This prestigious award, of course, belongs to the entire team of “M:tel”, which, with its professionalism, sets new standards of business success in the business map of Southeast Europe.  SRPSK A  No 8-9  2014


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Good Deed Another one in a series of great socially responsible campaigns of this company – #gooddeed – has been conceived so as to, in a unique way, enable everybody to do something for their loved ones, but also for little children from their municipality. The municipality with most reported good deeds will be donated a children’s playground by the company


ood will be rewarded with good.” The best among us are guided by this adage, as well as company “M:tel”. In the month of giving, December, the company initiated another great socially responsible campaign “Good deed”, within which it will, in an original way, reward good deeds. In order for the next year to be marked by good deeds, the project #gooddeed will last for another year, in the entire B&H. This project enables individuals to do something for their loved ones with little things, but also to win a children’s playground for the little ones from their municipality. We are witnesses to good deeds done by people on a daily basis, but what is it in us that drives us to selflessly help others? Psychologists say that acting in the name of other people helps us to feel better ourselves. Such a behavior influences us physically as well, and there is an increasing number of scientists who believe that that doing good deeds has positive effect on our health. Good deeds done in this project have been registered and are available online, at: On this link there is also an interactive map of good deeds, which will be populated in the next 365 days. All those who want can report their good deeds on this website, select the place they come from and upload a link, video or photograph that describe the good deed done. We do not divide good deeds into big and small, they are all important. This is what good deeds may look like: • Today I helped my neighbor chop woods. #gooddeed • I helped my friend to get a better grade in mathematics. #gooddeed

Message This is another of “M:tel’s” projects with which this company wants to send a message that it is important to do good deeds, because one thing is certain – everything is ephemeral, except for good deeds you have done for others.

• I cleaned a year for one old lady. #gooddeed • My friend is a voluntary blood donor. #gooddeed Therefore, there are no limits to good deeds, and we are certain that these examples will motivate people of good will to join this action and become its ambassadors. All those who want to be a part of this great campaign, together with company “M:tel”, can share on their favorite social network (“Facebook”, “Twitter”, “Instagram”, “Tumblr”...) their short stories under hashtag #gooddeed. The participants may also motivate those who are closest to them to share the reported good deeds on social networks, so that they would all together be a step closer to the children’s playground. 

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D o na t i o n


Care about

People’s Health Thanks to the support of this company, the interior of the Surgery building was renovated. Special attention was dedicated to design of patients’ rooms and intensive care unit. A new aggregate, necessary for stability of electric supply, was also purchased. This is yet another in the series of socially responsible activities of “M:tel”


check for 45,000 KM was symbolically handed put on December 26 in Banjaluka General Manager of “M:tel”, Goran Vlaović, to General Manager of the University Hospital “Clinical Center Banjaluka” prof. Dr. Mirko Stanetić. Thanks to this valuable donation and

Getting Closer This event was also attended by Vladimir Nikolić, General Consul of the Republic of Serbia in B&H. Humane gestures of companies such as “M:tel”, he said, bring our regions even closer together.


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friendly support of “M:tel”, the interior of the Surgery building was renovated, especially patients’ rooms, intensive care unit and hallways. A new aggregate was purchased and installed, necessary for power supply in the building in case of outage of normal power supply. – It is our pleasure to promote this activity. We want to show that there are companies that recognize how important the existence of the University Hospital “Clinical Center Banjaluka” is for the citizens of the Republic of Srpska – prof. Dr. Mirko Stanetić said. – We used this donation ex-

actly where it was needed the most. The stay of our patients, who are in the center of our attention, is now far more comfortable. Our mission is to efficiently provide good quality healthcare services to the citizens of Republika Srpska and wider region, on the secondary and tertiary level of healthcare, through continuous investment in development, creation and adoption of innovative solutions and improvement of cooperation with the community, in order to improve healthcare and health related conditions. HUMANENESS AS A SOCIAL PRINCIPLE “M:tel” has been one of the greatest friends and donors of the University Hospital “Clinical Center Banjaluka” for a number of years, and this donation is continuation of cooperation and result of recognizing the needs to improve conditions of healthcare and work in the biggest healthcare institution in Republika Srpska. – This is only one in a series of socially responsible activities of “M:tel” –Goran

Vlaović, General Manager of the company, said. – I am glad that we are about to close the year in which we have continuously worked for the benefit of the society in which we operate in this way: by creating conditions for better work of the Surgical Ward in Banjaluka. Namely, it is the task of all of us to make the world as best place as possible. We hope that this example of humaneness will be followed by other companies as well, so that we would help in joint efforts those who need help the most and in this way influence the quality of life in this region. With sincere pleasure I want to hand out symbolically this check and let this day at the end of the current year mark the beginning of a better year for the Surgery in Banjaluka. Handing out of the donor’s check was also attended by the Minister of Health and Social Protection of Republika Srpska, Dragan Bogdanić, who welcomed this type of activity of “M:tel”, emphasizing that cooperation with this company, on all levels of social responsibility, is on an enviable level. 

New Office of “M:tel” In order to mark the exceptionally successful year of 2014 in the best possible way, on December 24, “M:tel” formally opened another new office in Banjaluka, in Veselina Masleše Street no. 3 (or as the people of Banjaluka call it, Gospodska Street). The new office is in the interior designed in accordance with the latest trends of design and functionality. The formal cutting of the ribbon and official beginning of work was attended by numerous citizens, media representatives and business associates of the company. In this way, “M:tel” closed the year in which it achieved significant business results, the year in which there were many reasons for satisfaction: from acquiring prestigious title of the most profitable company in B&H in its field, through global award for strategic management, successful overcoming of the consequences of unprecedented floods to, now, opening another office in the center of Banjaluka.

After the opening, and on the occasion of the upcoming holidays, the company donated 100 boxes with New Year’s decorations to those who were present. Three luckiest visitors found in their boxes the vouchers for special gifts, which they could take immediately in the new office. And the first 100 visitors who conducted some activity in the new office received, as a token of gratitude, New Year’s “M:tel” package. 

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Mi stvaramo život Мы создаем жизнь. We create life U 30 zemalja, na 5 kontinenata В более 30 стран мира, на 5 континентах In over 30 countries, on 5 continents

Najbolje iz Srbije Самое лучшее из Сербии Best from Serbia

Institut za ratarstvo i povrtarstvo Институт полеводства и овощеводства Institute of Field and Vegetable Crops Tradicija od 1938. godine / Традиция с 1938 года / Tradition since 1938 Maksima Gorkog 30, 21000 Novi Sad, Srbija

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