I went to my birthplace after 30 years.

I had left it in 1992.


I don’t know how to describe what I saw.

Practically nothing.



It was all overgrown.


When I came and saw my father’s house,

I wished my heart would burst on the spot.

There was nobody there.

When I went to my village and saw…

What can you see? 





With all that beauty of the Drina Valley

and its grace, it was all overgrown

into a wilderness.


As if nobody had ever existed.


–     Hazira Đafić



Nicht Fallen is an ongoing interdisciplinary project that has been collecting, chronicling and depicting the communities and landscapes scarred and marginalised by the war in the former Yugoslavia since 2017. Juxtaposed with found objects, the images of daily life raise issues that, although specific to the historical and geographic realities of the region, testify to the universality of recurrent violence and the perpetuation of conflict long after the war has ended. One of the collected objects in the series is a picture frame held together by tape that reads “nicht fallen”.  In the frame, Hazira Đafić kept a newspaper cutting of the obituary of her brother Merfin, who was killed after stepping on a mine not far from the refugee centre ten years after the war. Hazira, who had fled with her brother to the safe area of Tuzla in 1993, remains displaced to this day and lives in the Ježevac refugee village near Banovići.