When he retired in 2009, Robert realised his lifelong dream of becoming a painter. It started as a hobby, but he felt compelled to depict images from his former career to help him deal with a mild form of PTSD after working with victims of torture, who were then executed and thrown into mass graves during conflicts in Europe and Africa.
On realising that both his experiences in forensics, together with his artwork might help people who themselves may have experienced trauma, he started exhibiting his work. His ‘Witness’ exhibition curated by ‘iota’ gallery was shown throughout the UK including in 2015 in the Scottish Parliament. That year he was invited onto the Board trustees of Remembering Srebrenica (Scotland). In 2020 he felt honoured when invited to become an Ambassador of Remembering Srebrenica UK.
You can find download the Witness exhibition programme here.
You can view a virtual exhibition of Dark Bosnia here.
As an ambassador of Remembering Srebrenica UK, Robert currently delivers educational presentations in various venues including in schools, museums and prisons, using his art to help illustrate the genocide in Srebrenica during the 1990s, the first genocide in Europe since the holocaust. He sends the message that art as well as being therapeutic, can be a positive way of explaining and recovering from traumatic experiences.
“The lesson from Srebrenica is that no society is invulnerable to prejudice and intolerance. We must all remain vigilant against these forces, and take positive action to build stronger, more resilient communities.”
Remembering Srebrenica UK is a British charitable initiative. Their vision is a society free from hatred.
In 2019 Robert was invited by Glasgow Museums on a delegation to Nuremberg where he accepted an invitation to deliver his Bosnia presentation to a public audience in Court 600, in the historic Memorium Nuremberg Trials (The Nazi War Crimes Trial Chamber). Following this, Remembering Srebrenica UK will support a plan to include in their Holocaust Museum, a section relating to the Srebrenica Genocide.
Read more from German Magazine Cicero here.
Listen to Remembering Srebrenica & Message Heard’s award winning podcast, Untold Killing, here.