How a Bettie from Bosnia sees things.

International Bettie contributor Masa Hilcisin is a dynamic woman, raised in Bosnia and living in Prague. An educator, humanitarian, filmmaker, mother and artist (among many other titles), here is what she poetically had to say when asked about what it means to her to help women heal through art … and to be a Bettie.

There is her gaze

Look into the memory. There is her gaze, gaze of the past, gaze of vulnerability, gaze which explores borders, gaze which knows when to say “no”, gaze which follows layers of paint, happiness and sorrow…gaze which follows her-story, her-saying of stories that are yet to be exposed…gaze which fights for magic, beauty, exchange…Exchange of her voice with the rest of us, with the rest of you, exchange of her texture, exchange of her tones, exchange of intimate and particular nuances of life…Do you see her stunning composition gleamed by translucent light? Do you hear sound, her music which comes from thick texture, from harmonic dance of her-stories? Do you feel her vivid dance as she binds up, disappearing and emerging again? Do you feel the pulse of her visual surfacing as she holds and reveals the pain?

There she is; she uses canvas, words, tones, dance, papers, paints, fabrics, frame to compose stories of freedom, to compose stories of shame, to compose stories of immigration, to compose stories of guilt, to compose stories of motherhood, to compose stories of home, to compose stories of sacrifices, to compose stories of wars, to compose stories of heart, to compose personal, vivid and boundless parts of her-self. There she is; she uses script, scream, silence, touch, tangible realm, to share intimate, to share personal, to share a particular part of her-own life.

And there she meets Bettie who was another gaze, gaze of magic, gaze, of beauty, gaze of exploration, gaze of subtle approach, gaze of deep knowing, gaze of irresistible sexuality, gaze of her own body, gaze of openness, gaze of wisdom, gaze of teaching, gaze of her sassiness, gaze of her freedom, gaze of her journey, gaze of her own growth, gaze of laugh, gaze of dance, gaze of dance, gaze of dance, gaze of dance…

Do you see personal space, public space which she uses to share her-own private self with you, with us?

And I am one of you. One who shares her own art, one who explores, one who experienced immigration, sacrifices, love, pain, love, motherhood, pain, love, war, intensity, surviving, pain, love, growing, emerging, pain, love…One who adores to share your art, art of you great women artists, art of your beings, art of your voices…your paints, your sculptures, your sounds, your images, your creations, your beauties, your sorrows, your strengths…One who keeps following you in personal and public spaces, sharing your voices, sharing her own voice in beautiful synergy of art and dance, and festivals, and galleries…in endless journey of your own creative beauties…where your art, her-art keep flowing, keep emerging, keep dancing, keep dancing, keep dancing, keep dancing…

If you’d like to support Masa in her drive to help others with women and visual storytelling in Mexico, please click here!

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