History, Art History
Poland and Netherlands
Ewa-Anna Kumelowski

Octobre 2024 à juin 2025


Ewa Anna Kumelowski received a joint BA in political science from the Freie Univeristät Berlin and Sciences Po Paris, after which she completed her MA in history at the Doctoral School of Sciences Po Paris in 2018. She completed her PhD in 2022 as part of a cotutelle procedure between the Chair of Southeastern History at the Humboldt Universität zu Berlin and the CETOBaC at the EHESS in Paris, examining the history of narrative production within the visual arts scene of besieged Sarajevo through a micro-historical perspective. 

She has since been a visiting fellow at the Department of Eastern European Studies of the Free University of Berlin (2023) and the Institute for Contemporary History in Ljubljana (2024), and leads the “Sarajevo Under Siege: A Visual Art Archive” digitalization project with the Historical Museum of Bosnia-Herzegovina, funded by the UCLA Modern Endangered Archives Program. Her research focuses on Yugoslav and post-Yugoslav history, the role of culture in armed conflicts, and expressions of everyday experiences of war, particularly amongst marginalized populations.

Search project

Parallel fortunes: a Yugoslav arts scene beyond the Yugoslav state

The violent dissolution of the Yugoslav state led to the disintegration of a shared cultural sphere common to all of the former republics, yet did not entirely halt cooperation across newly established borders. 

This continued collaboration was most visible in the city of Sarajevo : host to both a Yugoslav exhibition as late as 1987, and artists such as the Slovenian group IRWIN that regularly exhibited during the four-year siege of the city. Abandoning traditionally geographic frameworks used to address Yugoslav artistic production at the turn of the century, this project addresses the following two-part question: how, and by whom, was the Yugoslav visual arts scene maintained during the turbulent period preceding the violent disintegration of the Yugoslav state, and what happened to this arts scene while the country it was formed in was disintegrating ? Addressing the intangible cultural heritage of a physical political space that has ceased to exist, this project explores how contemporary understandings of these local legacies potentially deviate from actual lived experiences - and in which contexts they remain reflective of dominant political narratives. Relying on archival research and a micro-historical methodology, this study hereby traces how a small subset of cultural workers interacted with one another at a time when they were, at least nominally, not supposed to have been doing so.


KUMELOWSKI, Ewa Anna. Héritages visuels contestés. Mobiliser la Yougoslavie socialiste dans la production artistique contemporaine des femmes en Bosnie-Herzégovine, Balkanologie 18, 2023.

KUMELOWSKI, Ewa Anna. Sarajevo Ghetto Spectacle: An introduction to the history of the visual arts scene of besieged Sarajevo, Third Text 34, 2020, pp.350-368

KUMELOWSKI, Ewa Anna. Review of The Geopolitics of Memory. Journey to Bosnia by James Riding, Südosteuropa 68, 2020, pp.569-580