Nicole Slezak

Nicole Slezak (Kosovo Women’s Network): Nicole received her BA in communication studies and political science from the University of California, Los Angeles In 2007. During this time she studied abroad in the Czech Republic on a National Security Education Program scholarship. At the time of her fellowship, Nicole was studying for a Master’s Degree in Security Studies with a focus on International Security at Georgetown University.

Kosova–A Newborn State

21 Jul

On 17 February 2008, Kosova declared independence. To symbolize this independence a monument was unveiled in front of the youth center in Prishtina. It spells out NEWBORN in large yellow letters and was signed by Kosovars on independence day. The New Kosova Report talks with Fisnik Ismaili, who was part of the team that designed the Newborn monument.

NKR: For those that don’t know about it, what is NEWBORN?

Ismaili: NEWBORN is a typographic sculpture spelling the word “newborn”, which was unveiled on the Day of Kosovo’s Declaration of Independence. During the celebrations, people expressed themselves by writing on the sculpture with permanent markers. It was first signed by the Prime Minister, Hashim Thaci, and the President, Fatmir Sejdiu, followed by the rest of the people who attended the manifestation on 17 February 2008. This included ordinary citizens as well as prominent Kosovor individuals. NEWBORN is made of metal, weighs 9 tons, it is 3 meters high, 24 meters long and 1 meter deep. NEWBORN is now the only monument that marks the Declaration of Independence of the Republic of Kosovo.

NKR: Why “newborn”? Why yellow?

Ismaili: NEWBORN, intentionally in English, was the single word that could describe that special day: A birth of a new country, and the connotations of this word imply only positive things (birth, innocence, sincerity, love…). We were aware that all the foreign media will be present on the day, so we wanted to give them an image that could be understood and mark that day. Words “New” and “Born” are easily understood by people whose English is not perfect, too. The idea was to present Kosovo as a new, contemporary, trendy country, ready to be embraced by the world. The yellow colour, was intentionally used in combination with blue banners and supporting slogans, to represent both new Kosovor flag’s colours as well as EU colours. The supporting slogans were: “NEW life is BORN”, “NEW hope is BORN”, “NEW future is BORN” and “NEW country is BORN”, all presented in blue and yellow colours. In addition, yellow is a colour that represents the sunrise – birth of a new day, new hope… end of darkness.

NEWBORN, the Symbol of Kosovo Independence“, New Kosova Report, 4 July 2008.

My pictures of the NEWBORN monument:




Posted By Nicole Slezak

Posted Jul 21st, 2007

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