ISSP documentary / 4:13

Kuldiga, Latvia, 2014


When I look through my photography archive, I notice that the most beautiful moments and people I’ve met in the last years all came from ISSP - the International Summer School of Photography, which occurs every august in a tiny village in Latvia. For a week it gathers together 6 tutors and around 70 participants and gives a big challenge for step forward.

For those brave of heart, it's always something big and momentus. One new thought about your own work after the workshop is oftentimes enough to truly level up. But ISSP is not only about photography, for me it's mostly about the fireworks of friendships, homefeeling (?) nature, battling with myself and building future bridges.

I went there to make a video documentary about how it happens, but in the end it is more about how it feels and about the love that remains.

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VDV day / 2:53

Saint-Petersburg, 2013


Anna Schiller's performance "VDV Day" is a documentation of the random events our eponymous heroine finds herself entangled in in the summer of 2013, during the Russian Airborne Troops Day celebrations in St. Petersburg. Deliberately placing herself into this space of militaristic mayhem, our heroine embodies the exact opposite of what is unfolding before the viewer's eyes. A backdrop of drunken bodies in stripped shirts falling into the fountain, vocal invitations to retire to a bathroom stall. Detachment, unavailability, ease, sublimity all serve as a sort of counterpoint to the proceedings, not in a malicious way, not as satire, but simply allowing us to rise above this particular scene. Schiller's heroine includes the viewer in this strange experience: placing him in this rough, uncouth, almost bacchanalian reality through a fearless witness, a meta-image built from itself, an image the paratroopers also latch on to, professing their love, crying and confessing their affinity any way they can. Is this not a metaphor for the admiration of art by the casual viewer? Or one for the aesthetic experience as a whole? The action takes place in the Palace Square and what surrounds it, a symbol of the cultural capital, which can also be interpreted ambiguously: either as metaphor for the modern political process , with its militaristic sentiments and departure from cultural values, i.e. approaching it by placing an ideal image in this nightmarish reality. Seen in this context, Schiller reminds us that art is impenetrable and ethereal - it is pure and undefiled, fearless and indestructible, regardless of any formal procedures or mechanisms it is being subjected to – it always finds a way. No wonder the selected medium is video - a metaphor for time, progress, process, a search.

Schiller leaves the ending open – dancing, she retires into the night, a faithful follower in tow. «VDV Day» is a romantic happening which rises above its documentarity - and transcends it.

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Like a prayer / with Fedor Ivanov / 3:59

Moscow 2012

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Documentation of garage exhibition "To Belong" 1:43 Moscow 2012


The exhibition took place in a car garage in the Moscow suburbs. Entering but one person at a time, the visitors received a flashlight, which they would use to find the photos, some of which traversed the walls on the shells of snails. I myself was also inside the space, concealed by a thin translucent cloth, illuminated by the light of a second flashlight. All of this was set to sound recorded at the airport.

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