Photography: Olya Ivanova
Text: Anna Sanders
Moscow based photographer, Olya Ivanova, has dedicated several years to documenting the segregated and slowly disappearing way of life for the rural populations of the quiet, unseen villages of Northern Russia. National holidays, in celebrating traditional Soviet values and modern traditions, have become essential in defining Russian national identity, and ‘Village Day’, an annual festival that takes place amongst these rural communities, is no different.
Documenting in the style of the professional village photographers who are invited to preserve the memories of family life, from christenings to funerals, Ivanova captures her subjects with a quiet grace and dignified formality. Reading as though a family album, we witness the celebration, the community and the companionship of these tight knit communities as they commemorate their slowly dying way of life. The Village Day serves as a thoughtful glimpse into this little known facet of Russia’s national identity, set within her vast, idyl and often forgotten countryside.
Photography © Olya Ivanova