Sonja Vujanović was one of the first women who joined the partisan resistance movement in Yugoslavia. Inspired by the revolutionary books she received from a classmate in high school, she joined the communist and antifascist organization in the late 1930s and in 1941 became a partisan fighter in German-occupied Serbia. Ultimately, she was captured, tortured and after several other prisons and concentration camps, ended up in Auschwitz-Birkenau. There she became a member of the resistance and a leader of its combat unit.
By listening to Sonja’s story, told vividly despite her being almost 100 years old when the film was shot, we travel through the landscapes of her revolutionary life as they exist today. The Serbian forests and mountains where the partisans gathered are complemented by the muddy grounds and countless chimneys of Auschwitz and Sonja’s tiny Belgrade flat where she lived with her husband and cat.
After the film, the director Marta Popivoda will join us for a Q&A with Noortje Smeltink.
Read more about Marta Popivoda
Marta Popivoda describes herself as a “feminist, queer, and antifascist artist”. One of the main topics in her work is the relation between memory and history. Her first feature documentary, Yugoslavia, How Ideology Moved Our Collective Body, premiered at the 63rd Berlinale and was later screened at many international film festivals.
The film is part of the permanent collection of MoMA New York, and is featured in What Is Contemporary Art?, MoMA’s online course about contemporary art from 1980 to the present. Her work has also been featured in major art galleries, such as Tate Modern London, MoMA New York, M HKA Antwerp, Museum of Modern Art + MSUM Ljubljana, etc.