Drugi jezik na kojem je dostupan ovaj članak: Bosnian
By: Ekrem Dupanović
On Saturday morning I received a message from Zvezdana Žujo: “I’m sorry I don’t have some nice news to tell you this weekend. Our Aunt has died.”
I almost dropped my phone. I was expecting this news, but I was not ready to hear she has passed away. When I saw her on 21 December, at the UEPS award ceremony in Atelje 212, she seemed quite under the weather. I asked her what was wrong. She just smiled and said: “Nothing, what could be wrong?” It was visible that she was sick, and that it wouldn’t be much longer… We all expected it, but no one wanted to accept the idea that we could ever be left without her smile and her nice words. That evening at Atelje 212 she climbed the stage to receive the Dragan Sakan Award, which Sakan’s sons Žarko and Lazar handed to Aunt for her decades long loyalty to New Moment.
Mirjana Pejović – Tetka (Aunt) passed away in her sleep at the age of 70, probably dreaming of something beautiful. Beautiful is all she ever knew to dream. She learned to dream from Saki, to whom she was an important support throughout her professional career. Saki always said that great ideas need to be dreamed first – that they first appear in our dreams. Aunt had great ideas for everyone she knew, probably coming from her dreams.
I met Mirjana Pejovic in the early eighties in Belgrade’s Borba agency. At that time I was a close friend with Fuad Jakupovic and Selim Mandzic, who were important players in Borba agency. It was even before Dragan Sakan’s arrival in Borba. He came as a young researcher, and left Borba as a completely rounded creative – one of the best we had under this Balkan sky. When he decided to go his own way, together with Ivan Stankovic he founded S Team Bates Saatchi & Saatchi, which will later be divided into Sakan’s New Moment and Ivan’s Communis. When it was time for her to decide, Aunt, quite normally, went with New Moment and Saki.
It’s easier for Saki today. He’s no longer on this world, to go through this sadness with us. It is much harder for Ivan. I know because he wrote to me today: “My dear friend! I started about Aunt, as you asked of me, but I’m not sure I will be able to do it by tomorrow morning. I think I’m on the right track, but I need more time. Still, though I knew it was a matter of days, I was terribly struck by this news.”
When someone in our industry earns so much love, trust and respect, they can really be proud of themselves, and of all that they have done in his life. Aunt can leave this world with pride, and go to some better place, where she will continue to share the smiles and the beautiful words. Once again she will be at Saki’s side.
At the annual ceremony of UEPS in 2011, announcing the decision of the Board of Directors of UEPS (which he personally initiated) to hand the special recognition for the promotion and development of the marketing profession to Mirjana Pejovic, Ivan Stanković said:
“For years, we have rewarded creatives, strategists, directors, owners, planners, designers, and other people of different profiles at gatherings like this. We give different types of awards, from acknowledgments, gratitude, to the greatest reward, the life achievement award. But it seems to us that in these acknowledgments we have neglected people working in the shadows, without whom and without whose work, even the laureates would not be so successful to deserve our acknowledgments. These are our colleagues, our quiet neighbors, who make lives easier for all of us, and who, in their personality, modesty and selflessness, are often forgotten. That is why we have decided to correct this injustice this year and for the first time give special recognition to such a person – for her decades-long, selfless contribution and assistance to people who have crucially influenced the development of the profession.
This year’s winner is truly a unique person on the propaganda sky of Serbia.
She is one of the few who talks with all those present here.
She collaborated, directly and indirectly, with all the previous laureates of the Lifetime Achievement Award. Even with those who have returned it.
She was always the one who encouraged the scared, calmed the nervous, healed those in love, and cared for the sick. Almost all of the key people in the Serbian advertising market had the opportunity to experience the wholesomeness of her warm words, her inexhaustible goodness of personality, her wisdom of advice and assessment.
Her life was the agency, her children were numerous members of UEPS, winners of numerous awards and recognitions, scattered throughout the world and here. She found her life calling in this profession and she managed to through her entire career with proud and honor, and go to retirement still full of optimism and positive energy, consoling those who were supposed to console her, and helping even those who didn’t need help.
Her nickname became an integral part of her name, and has survived for so long, because for many of us she was much closer than even the closest kin. She was a safe port where you came in difficult times.
And it wasn’t just the colleagues whom she helped. For about twenty years she has been an active member of the Circle of Serbian Sisters and she unselfishly helps those far more vulnerable than people in our profession.
In the end, as some say, if she didn’t exist, she should be invented.
We are pleased to give Mirjana Pejović, known to all of you as Aunt, the special acknowledgment for the advancement and development of the marketing profession.”
Although it’s weekend, I managed to get a few statements from people who knew Mirjana Pejovic well.
Ana Vehauc, New Moment:
As the dowsing rods recognize metal or water, Aunt had the ability to recognize good in everyone, and to encourage us to foster it and pass it on. She never taught us, yet she taught us all: to be patient with novices, gentle to veterans, and sacrificing to each other. If giving is happiness, then Aunt was the happiest person in the world, and we were privileged to have her wisdom and her sense of measure safeguard us from all the dragons and boogiemen. She was the genius loci of Hilandarska 14 and the sun that cannot be extinguished.
Sašo Pešev, director of New Moment New Ideas Company, Skoplje:
“When I first came to the offices of S Team Bates Saatchi & Saatchi in Belgrade in the mid-90s, I heard about the ‘aunt’ for the first time, trying to understand whose aunt was she. She wasn’t Saki’s aunt, nor Ivan’s. So whose aunt was she then? Soon I realized that she was the aunt of all of us, our Aunt. She was the embodiment of the unreserved care towards all of us, something that only Aunt could do. She knew everyone and everything, both professionally and privately, she loved all people and cared about all of us. She was the one and only Aunt.”
Milena Garfield (Washington, SAD), film and theatre producer, Sakan’s long-time associate at New Moment:
“Mirjana Pejovic! That’s how she was called by those who didn’t knew her. But for all of us, whom she loved, she was Aunt. She was Aunt by name, title, determination, mission. She was Aunt by care and warmness. If you didn’t know something, you would ask Aunt, the guardian of our memories and secrets. When there was something you couldn’t do or didn’t know how to, only she could do it. She knew how to listen, to support, to console us and to keep us safe. No one knew the secrets of her powers, and all the good deeds that she did, she did them discreetly, inconspicuously, easy as if it was a breeze. She did it as if anyone could do it. But only she could – Aunt!
I’ve never seen her in a dress, and never without a smile. And as such she will remain in my memory – striking and unforgettable in the things that adorned her, and with which she shone a light for all of us so we wouldn’t stray: her nobility, warmth, selflessness, spirit, cheerfulness and gentleness. I will remember her for her prudence and her willingness to help always and everyone.
There’s a saying that lucky are those who have an aunt in their life. But only us who knew Mirjana Pejovic were lucky to have an Aunt with the capital ‘A’. That’s more than aunt, and more than a friend.
She is out guardian angel.
Thank you Aunt! You snuck from us so we wouldn’t notice – so we wouldn’t worry.
Wherever you went, I know you’ll continue to watch over us from there, as you have watched over us for all these years.
High above us, among the stars.
And yet with us, in our hearts.”
Vladimir Čeh, founder of the Museum of History of Advertising:
“In my collection of business cards – and I have several thousand of them – there are all sorts of cards: black and white, colored, thin and thick, cardboard, plasticized, plastic and metal, single-sided and double-sided, matte and shiny, transparent, varnished … gold-plated, with watermarks, with photos, with the address of the company on the map on the other side…
And, of course, all with a different text below the name.
I know only of a single simple business card where the text below the name has identified the person unmistakably, clearly and precisely: it’s a title that spoke of loyalty, efficiency, trustworthiness, kindness, nobility, gentleness and wit, and ultimately, a title that spoke of the importance of that person for all those who received that card.
Below the name on the card, it is simply stated: Tetka (Aunt)
Many of us have aunt. Those who have one are lucky people. And they can say ‘She’s my aunt’. But there was only one aunt who was ‘our aunt’. She was the Aunt with a capital ‘A’ – Mirjana Pejovic.”
26 February 2018