Silence / felt, thread, wood / 2007

This is a “social sculpture”, as J. Beuys once said, that will always hold potential for sound. It’s an object, a musical instrument wrapped in a military felt blanket. Gusle is much more than a musical instrument - it’s a gateway to collective mythologized past for all Balkanians. It’s not simply a tune that you play on it - it’s a sound of melancholy that penetrate deep into a soul of the listener bringing sorrow and anger, a scary melody that inspires revenge. Gusle speaks with sacred authority that can not be questioned.

Gusle gave a soundtrack to the war I’ve experienced too. They called to arms, spoke of historical victimhood and oppression, and demanded blood of the villains as a payback. I took my grandfather’s gusle and I wrapped them in a military blanket to silence them and put them to rest; to close that portal to a bloody warring past, and point toward future in which the war cries that scared lives of every generation in that part of the world will be finally muted.