CAN DOGS RIDE ON THE TRAMS // 07. 1994.
AMELA VILIC // COSTUME DESIGNER
ORAL HISTORY - INTERVIEW
ORAL HISTORY - TRANSCRIPT

July 1994

Amela Vilic
Costume designer
CAN DOGS RIDE ON THE TRAMS

‘The tram started running again. Before the war I always took my dog on the tram. He simply loved to ride on the tram. I thought that was normal, and under these conditions when the tram started running again I figured that it was absolutely normal to take the dog along with me on the tram. The first problem was when the driver simply didn’t allow me to get on with my dog. I thought that maybe I had arrived too late, and that I had somehow just missed it. When I got onto the next tram I had trouble with the passengers. No matter how much of an effort I made as I entered the tram. There was enough room for everyone and people started running away. I had never seen anything like it. It was as if I had brought some huge beast onto the tram.’

TOPIC RELATED PHOTOGRAPHS
TOPIC RELATED TEXT

JULY 1994


• The Contact Group, composed of the U.K., France, Russia, Germany and the U.S. will present a map with the territorial demarcation of BiH and a set of threats in order to ensure acceptance of the plan.


• The U.S. Senate votes to not allow unilaterally lifting the arms embargo. The vote count is 50 - 50, but Vice President Al Gore casts the deciding vote against.


• Conflict between the Franciscans in Medjugorje. Fra Zovko, "Herzeg-Bosnia is the same as the creation of the Bosnian Serbs."


• Opening of U.S. Embassy in Sarajevo.
• Geneva, July 5th, 1994. Geneva peace agreement between the Muslims and Croats on the city of Mostar, placing it under the supervision of the European Union. Alija Izetbegovic and Kresimir Zubak sign the agreement.


• Top diplomats representing members of the G7 adopt a map dividing Bosnia and Herzegovina. They decided that with warnings and incentives they can compel the Muslims and Serbs to accept it.
• Gorazde: UN soldiers increasingly frequent target of attacks.


• The Contact Group proposes a portfolio of maps for all of the delegations. Concessions were made to the Government of BiH by preserving Bosnia and Herzegovina as a single state within its existing borders.


• The citizens of Sarajevo gain weight.
• On roofs in Sarajevo green gardens are cultivated as a means of survival.


• NATO appeals to the warring sides to accept the peace plan.


• On the plan presented by the Contact Group, Alija Izetbegovic says: "The plan is bad, but all of the other options are worse."
• U.K. Foreign Minister Douglas Hurd, and the Foreign Minister of France, Alain Juppé, arrive in Sarajevo on the occasion of the opening of the French Embassy.


• Increased sniper fire.
• The Parliament of the Federation BiH accepts the Contact Group plan.


• The Bosnian Serb Assembly has not yet announced a decision on the peace plan proposed by the Contact Group.


• Flights to Sarajevo airport are suspended because the a "C-141 Hercules" plane is hit.
• The UN Special Envoy for Human Rights, Tadeusz Mazowiecki: "My statements were not taken seriously, and my recommendation was not accepted, because that is how the governments of some European countries wanted it to be."


• The Bosnian Serbs reject the new peace plan. The international community is now left without a new initiative.


• In Mostar the administration of the European Union is established.
• Because of the Bosnian Serbs's rejection of the peace plan, U.S. Secretary of State Warren Christopher, says: "We hope that the Russians put pressure on the Serbs to accept the peace plan."


• The Bosnian Serbs close the "blue routes" around Sarajevo.


• NATO is ready to provide air support to UN troops. The Bosnian Serb Army attacks a UN convoy on Mount Igman.


• Geneva: The Contact Group brings sanctions, but no military intervention.
• Sarajevo: A tram comes under sniper attack. Passengers wounded. Tram traffic suspend. UN soldiers return fire from an APC and thus stop the sniper fire.

Veterinarian’s Clinic

The Veterinarian’s Clinic is on Daniel Ozmo Street, in the store where they used to sell hi-fi equipment. Its hours are from 9 a.m. ad 2 p.m. Lines are very long and the service is full including very complex surgical operations. Sarajevo became the city of abandoned pedigree dogs who are sadly roaming the streets, frozen, hungry and wounded. Their owners have left Sarajevo and left them behind, or they don’t have food to even feed themselves.

Amela Vilic
She was born on the verge of Leo and Virgo in 1958 in Sarajevo, where she graduated the Academy of Fine Arts. She has been working as a theatrical, film and TV costume designer for the past 15 years. She designed costumes for some 30 theater plays, 10 TV serials and numerous TV shows, performances, happenings, fashion shows...

THE SIEGE
She worked as the costume designer for 15 theater plays and numerous TV shows. She created the sports uniforms of the Bosnian athletes at the Mediterranean Games, as well as uniforms for various institutions and organizations, a collection of children’s clothing...

It there were life after life, in what shape would you return?
I think like air.

How do you describe perfect happiness?
To do only what I love and want.

What is you biggest loss?
The death of my dad, and my dog Gustav.

What is your biggest gain?
A lot of small things that make me happy every day.

When and where were you happiest?
-

What are your lost illusions?
I thought that people have understood how wars were senseless and that they will simply never happen again. However, it happened to me, to us...

Describe your day at work.
Getting up at seven, and then work, work, work...

Sarajevo?
Sarajevo...my happiness, my love, my life, my sorrow, long sleepless nights...

What words don’t you use anymore?
-

In your opinion, is morale a virtue?
It seems that I have my own morale to which I stick, and I think this is my virtue, but I am not sure how much this resembles the so-called public morale.

Where would you like to live?
I would like to live somewhere near the sea in a small peaceful place, near a big city, in a house that I would design myself.

How have you survived?
Work and only work.

What are you afraid of?
Feelings...

Does the past exist for you?
Yes.

This is the end of a civilization. What will the next one be like?
Without any logic.

Can you give us a recipe for mental health?
Laughter and fucking around.

How would you like to die?
If I can chose, then may it be a quick death.

Do you need hope to live?
Yes, I am always hoping for something.

What did ’92 look like, and ’93, and ’94?
Terrible, sad, unbelievable.

How would you call this period of your life?
An investigating period.

Your message from the end of the world, from a country of last things?
Hold your hands tight so the wind doesn’t blow you away.

Do you like life, and what is life all about?
Of course I love it, all of these rises and falls, the new beginnings and happy endings.

TRANSPORTATION

As early as the first year of the siege the official statistics showed that the number of vehicles fell from 105,000 to 5,000; of the 200 city transportation routes there remained one and of the 6,000 city transportation vehicles there remained 60. In May 1992 the city Public transportation depot was shelled and a great number of buses, trams and trolley buses were destroyed. The trolley buses stopped operating. A few buses and trams, provided there was fuel and electricity, took to the streets where they became favorite targets. The VW Golf cars, made in Sarajevo before the war, were the most widely used means of transportation. Due to the high speeds and a great number of drivers without driving licenses a poster appeared during the first months of the siege: DRIVE CAREFULLY, DON’T GET KILLED IN VAIN. It also informed the citizens that THERE WERE 300 DEAD AND INJURED in traffic accidents. White UN vehicles, which killed several Sarajevans, were the most frequent sight on the streets.

TOPIC RELATED VIDEO
POLLS
POLL
MAPA SIEGE OF SARAJEVO