Ron Haviv’s exhibit “Blood and Honey: A Balkan War Journal” opened in the Gallery 11/07/95

Blood and Honey – A Balkan War Journal is Ron Haviv’s document of the conflict in Yugoslavia in the 1990s. From the first outbreak of war in 1991 to the turmoil in Kosovo, Haviv produced images that depicted both the urgency and the tragedy of war.

“I watched the war start and listened to these predictions. Originally my work was intended as news photographs. I hoped to draw attention to the situation, to help provoke the world to react, to prevent what the people of Yugoslavia had predicted. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to do that. The war spread, engulfing all the regions the people of the former Yugoslavia said it would. I saw it through to the end, and today, I hope my work stands as a testament to the war. It is an accusation to those who had the power to do something, yet stood by and did nothing as hundreds of thousands died and millions more became refugees.” Ron Haviv


In the last three decades, Haviv has covered more than twenty-five conflicts in over one hundred countries. His work in the Balkans, which spanned over a decade of conflict, was used as evidence to indict and convict war criminals at the International tribunal in The Hague. President H.W. George Bush cited Haviv’s chilling photographs documenting paramilitary violence in Panama as one of the reasons for the 1989 American intervention.

Many guests attended the opening of the exhibition, and the attendees were addressed by Ron Haviv, Sonja Biserko, the president of the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia, charge d’affaires in the Embassy of United States in Bosnia and Herzegovina Nicholas Hill, Mayor of Sarajevo Ivo Komsic, and the guests were greeted by Tarik Samarah, the founder of the Gallery 11/07/95.
Sonja Biserko emphasized how some of the photographs are impossible to describe in words:
”Because they are so striking they stay imprinted in the memory. This is the only way to preserve the memory, not only in Bosniak community, but also in the region and the world. In some respects, Srebrenica became a paradigm for every genocide, those which happened and those which were attempted. It is therefore important that these occasions become one of the cornerstones in the construction of memory for those things that happened in the nineties in the Balkan.”    
Nicolas Hill asserted how Haviv’s photographs ”show the consequences of the war for the civilian population”, and how they contributed on how ”to tell the world what happened here in the 90-ties”.  
The exhibition was organized thanks to the support of the United States Embassy to Bosnia and Herzegovina and in cooperation with the War Photo Limited Gallery from Dubrovnik.