Drawing from the post-socialist landscape of and attitudes about the former Yugoslavia, I analyze collective memory politics and the archive. I create in-between spaces, concentrating on objects, architectural features, political photographs, and embroidered words to mimic the geographic and political placement of a departed country. Dissecting the dissonance between national attitudes as well as personal feelings of displacement, the images and historical design in my pieces memorialize a long-gone environment and reflect upon contemporary disillusionment. Ultimately, as a study of absence, aesthetic markers, and political relics, my practice focuses on the transformation of national memory.
Alena Mehić was born in Zavidovići, Bosnia & Herzegovina in 1995 and immigrated to Nashville, Tennessee with her family in 1997. She received her MFA in Studio Art from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in May of 2021 and her BFA in Studio Art from Middle Tennessee State University in 2017. Through interior paintings, prints, hand-stitched embroideries, printed flags, personal collection and photographs, she shifts between remembrance and nostalgia, admiration and romanticization, and accusation and disappointment, attempting to retrieve memories scattered by conflict and instability. Most recently, she was awarded a 2021 Master of Fine Art Fellowship in Painting & Sculpture from the Dedalus Foundation in New York, NY.