Научная статья на тему 'An image of Siberia in contemporary foreign photography (the 90s of the 20th century - the first decade of the 21st century)'

An image of Siberia in contemporary foreign photography (the 90s of the 20th century - the first decade of the 21st century) Текст научной статьи по специальности «СМИ (медиа) и массовые коммуникации»

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Аннотация научной статьи по СМИ (медиа) и массовым коммуникациям, автор научной работы — Gruzdeva Anna S.

The article examines the most powerful and well-known works of foreign photographers of the late 20th early 21st centuries about Siberia: Carl de Keyzer, Claudine Doury, Steeve Iuncker, Rafal Milach, Gert Jochems, et al. Siberia both in Russian culture and in culture of the West is often considered as a special, “other” land, “the kingdom of the cold and darkness” or a rich, fertile land. Therefore, in this article we have tried to analyze what kind of an image of Siberia is formed in works of foreign photographers of the late 20th early 21st centuries, whether they are based on historical representations of this land, whether they use associative links “Siberia/cold”, “Siberia/exile”, and what emphasizes they put in their photographs. Photography today is an independent art form, a powerful research tool to see Siberia through the eyes of foreign photographers and extend our customary notions about the land.

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Образ Сибири в современной зарубежной фотографии (90-е гг. XX в. - 10-е гг. XXI в.)

В статье рассматриваются наиболее сильные и известные работы зарубежных фотографов конца XX начала XXI века о Сибири: Карла де Кейзера, Клодин Дори, Стива Янкера, Рафала Милаха, Герта Йохемса и др. Сибирь как в культуре России, так и в культуре Запада зачастую рассматривается как особенная, «другая» территория, «царство холода и мрака» или богатая, благодатная земля. Поэтому в данной статье мы попытались проанализировать, какой образ Сибири формируется в работах зарубежных фотографов конца XX начала XXI века, опираются ли они в работе на исторически сложившиеся представления об этой земле, используют ли ассоциативные связи Сибирь/холод, Сибирь/ссылка, на чем делают акценты в своих фотоработах. Фотография сегодня является самостоятельным видом искусства, мощным исследовательским инструментом, позволяющим увидеть Сибирь глазами иностранных авторов и расширить наши привычные представления об этой земле.

Текст научной работы на тему «An image of Siberia in contemporary foreign photography (the 90s of the 20th century - the first decade of the 21st century)»

Journal of Siberian Federal University. Humanities & Social Sciences 2 (2017 10) 255-270

УДК 5527

An Image of Siberia in Contemporary

Foreign Photography

(the 90s of the 20th Century -

the First Decade of the 21st Century)

Anna S. Gruzdeva*

Siberian Federal University 79 Svobodny, Krasnoyarsk, 660041, Russia

Received 20.01.2016, received in revised form 15.10.2016, accepted 03.02.2017

The article examines the most powerful and well-known works of foreign photographers of the late 20th - early 21st centuries about Siberia: Carl de Keyzer, Claudine Doury, Steeve luncker, RafalMilach, Gert Jochems, et al. Siberia both in Russian culture and in culture of the West is often considered as a special, "other" land, "the kingdom of the cold and darkness" or a rich, fertile land. Therefore, in this article we have tried to analyze what kind of an image of Siberia is formed in works offoreign photographers of the late 20th- early 21st centuries, whether they are based on historical representations of this land, whether they use associative links "Siberia/cold", "Siberia/exile", and what emphasizes they put in their photographs. Photography today is an independent artform, a powerful research tool to see Siberia through the eyes of foreign photographers and extend our customary notions about the land.

Keywords: Siberia, image, climate, prison, photography. DOl: 10.17516/1997-1370-0034. Research area: culture studies.


Siberia is a huge mysterious land, frightening and alluring at the same time - from the earliest times it has been a subject of the study of many geographers and historians, writers and ethnographers who little by little formed its image, both interesting for the Russian people and for the inhabitants of Europe or America. In the 19th century the sources of its formation were the notes of travellers, literary works and articles, notes from newspapers and magazines, as well as

© Siberian Federal University. All rights reserved

* Corresponding author E-mail address: foxic_ann@mail.ru

paintings and engravings. In the 20th century a significant role in shaping the image of Siberia was played by cinematography, radio, television and the Internet, and at the end of the 20th -beginning of the 21st centuries - photography. Of course, one way or another the territory of Siberia and people living there got into the shot of many amateur photographers in the 19th and 20th centuries, but as for this period, we can only talk about photography of the protocol, amateur nature that did not pursue artistic goals. In addition, even

in the 19th century travelling to Siberia was quite expensive; it required a lot of time and effort. In the past century the "Iron curtain" did not allow foreign people to see the wild land, so the foreign photographers' interest in Siberia occurs after the collapse of the USSR in the 1990s and continues to this day.

Firstly, criteria for selection of photographic projects for this article were based on the quality of works. For analysis, we chose the works of foreign photographers that were recognized by the global photographic community, were published in the media, exhibited in galleries or museums or released photo books. Secondly, it was important to examine which of the most common myths about Siberia - "cold", "exile", "aboriginal land", etc. - base this or that work, how it works with these myths: develops, comprehends, transforms, ignores and so on.

In the scientific literature the topic of this study has not yet been studied in the perspective in which it is presented in this article. This may be due to the fact that the interest in photography in art history and cultural studies originated not so long ago, and photographic projects on Siberia began to appear at the end of the 20th - beginning of the 21st centuries and have not yet become the subject of attention of experts in the field of the Humanities. Therefore, for this study, we used reviews and analytical articles from critics and curators written about photographic projects that we have studied, as well as abstracts to the series of photographs, interviews with the above mentioned photographers who helped in the interpretation of the studied material. We also used articles considering topics of global transformations of the Indigenous Small-Numbered Peoples of the North of Siberia (N.P. Koptseva, K.V. Reznikova, A.V. Kistova, E.A. Sertakova) studying the concepts of "cold", "climate", "winter" as primary metaphors of Siberia (E.A. Degalskaya, K.V. Anisimov) and materials devoted to the

specifics of metageography (D.N. Zamyatin, I.I. Mitin), history of Siberia and formation of its image in the culture (S.M. Kaznacheyev, N.N. Rodigina, N.V. Sverkunova), etc.

Siberia as a metaphor of the cold in the work "Yakutsk" by Steeve Iuncker (2013)

In one of his articles A.S. Pushkin wrote that "the climate, form of government and faith give each people a peculiar face." A mythologem "Siberia" that historically incorporated such metaphorical natural characteristics as "cold", "snow", "winter", "ice" was the basis of the image of the Siberian territory as "the kingdom of the cold and darkness", a cold and harsh land. Geographical remoteness from the centre of the territory of Russia and Europe, a specific climatic factor, history of settlement of Siberia and the description of long winters and harsh living conditions in this region by Russian writers largely contributed to the formation of this image of Siberia. As the researcher E.A. Degalskaya notes, "Symbols of the cold and winter became metaphorical indicators of the concept of Siberia. One of the functions of art and mythological symbols used in Russian (and Siberian) literature is that, on the one hand, these symbols served as a form for expressing concepts and ideas about Siberians and Siberia, which could have different semantic facets for interpretation, and, on the other hand, concealed the problems associated with overcoming the cold and space" (Degalskaya, 2012).

The image of Siberia as the "other" country, a mysterious and wild land of the taiga and tundra, has always been attractive to the West as an exotic image. A British writer Colin Thubron noted that Siberia "occupies twelfth of the total land area, and that is all you can know for sure about this land" (Degalskaya, 2012). In the works of foreign photographers of the late 20th - early

21st centuries Siberia was often considered as an area paralyzed by the cold. Firstly, the bulk of photographic series of the foreign authors was created in winter, and secondly, a territorial interest of photographers was often focused on the North of Siberia as a land of permafrost and harsh living conditions.

An associative link "Siberia/cold" is most clearly manifested in a 2013 series titled "Yakutsk" by a Swiss photographer Steeve Iuncker, a member of the VU photo agency. Despite the fact that starting from the late 19th century Yakutia has had an independent administrative status, it is still often perceived as Siberia in the Western culture, firstly, because of its proximity to the Krasnoyarsk Territory, Irkutsk region, and secondly, because the concept of the "cold" metonymically replaces the concept of "Siberia".

The "Yakutsk" series is a part of a series of works by Steeve Iuncker about the unique cities of the world. The author studies Tokyo as the most populous city of the planet, Yakutsk - as the coldest one. In a preface, the photographer pays attention to the fact that Yakutsk is 1840 km away from Irkutsk and 5000 km from Moscow, which indicates that for the carriers of the Western culture one of the main components of the image of Siberia is the scale of the territory. According to E.A. Degalskaya, "foreign researchers of Siberia also emphasize the mystical power of the Russian space and even talk about the ideology of space. In particular, American historians F. Hill and C. Gaddy got the two leading images - space and cold" (Degalskaya, 2012). Low, contrasting temperatures - in winter temperatures regularly drop to -40° C (the lowest temperature recorded is -64° C), in summer it goes up to +30° C - as well as the remoteness of the city to the cultural centre of the country are the main characteristics of Yakutsk for Steeve Iuncker. He also mentions that the city is a major world centre of the diamond production and is an area where people

are looking for ways to solve serious problems associated with the construction of buildings on the frozen land. Steeve Iuncker consciously determines a close relationship of Siberia and the cold, Yakutsk and the frost, which allows him to create his series as an extensive metaphor of the Siberian cold. For the author a visit to Yakutsk becomes an attempt to survive and work in extreme conditions: "On my arrival at the Yakutsk airport, I feel scrutinized -not because of my physical appearance but, I suppose, because people want to see how the only 'tourist' is dressed to face a type of cold that only people from this part of the world confront almost every day. The daughter of my host, who came to pick me up, starts by asking me if I have a hat and a pair of gloves. She is more worried than I am about my prospects, which doesn't put my mind at ease. Once outside, I viscerally and immediately understand her concern: this is not a cold for playing in, but to be protected from". (Iuncker, 2013)

The image of Yakutsk in the work of Steeve Iuncker is the image of a Siberian city in extreme living conditions. The metaphor of "eternal winter" unfolds in each picture of this work: Steeve Iuncker photographs thick and gray frosty haze that does not allow us to see anything further than 20 meters; frosted windows, electric lines, posts, traffic lights, trees and houses. He draws attention to the symbols of winter, which are beautiful snowflakes decorating shop windows. Frozen slabs of meat in stores and frozen fish in open markets also support the metaphor of the Siberian cold.

Steeve Iuncker shows Yakutsk as a place that was not designed for a happy life, an area where familiar urban communication is broken. One of the main motifs in this series becomes a motif of alienation, loneliness of people in a city with extreme temperatures and conditions of existence. In the photographs by

Steeve Iuncker, Yakutsk residents are mainly photographed separately, as a black silhouette on a background of snowy haze. Also, the characters in his series often stand with their backs to each other or to the viewer; a barrier separates them: a shop window, a bus or car window, they wrap themselves in fur or hide face in a jacket collar. Thus, the author shows a Siberian as a lonely, lost, but patient and enduring human. E.A. Degalskaya notes that the concept of a "Siberian" incorporated many mythological characteristics of the Siberian region, "metaphorical perception is generally created when expressing attitude in a figurative sense based on the similarity, comparison and analogy. Siberia is still perceived as a special country associated with snow and frost. One of the most common associations related to the polymorphic concept of a "Siberian" are a bear and the strong cold. In the 18th-19th centuries these notions were largely formed at the level of everyday consciousness. Most of them were related to discrepant myths of Siberia" (Degalskaya, 2012).

The image of a Siberian prison in the project called "Zona"

by Carl de Keyzer (2000-2001)

In culture, the image of Siberia has historically been closely connected with the image of captivity, as the history of exile and penal servitude in Siberia began in 1586, when the Robbery Prikaz (Criminal Police) was established in Tobolsk and began to exile runaway peasants, members of the civil unrest and criminals to a new land. The 1649 Council Code finally legalized exiles. Therefore, as the researchers note, "by the beginning of the 19th century Siberia already firmly established itself in literature and oral mythology as a place of exile. Crossing the Ural Mountains by voluntary and involuntary travellers was coloured with

strong emotions as the entry into not just a new unknown geographical space, but into another life. Exile to Siberia was perceived by many as death" (Dameshek, 2007).

In the 20th century, the image of Siberian captivity was fixed by creation of the Gulag system that for a long time became a symbol of human deprivation and anti-humanist, totalitarian Soviet policy (Karwowska, 2013). Therefore, the image of a Siberian prison, as the most severe and ruthless, has always been attractive to writers, journalists and artists from Europe and America, which in the 20th century, unlike the Soviet Union, cultivated democratic values.

The first foreign photographer who was allowed to take pictures of a Russian prison after the collapse of the USSR was a Belgian named Carl de Keyzer. In 1990, he became a nominated member of the legendary Magnum photo agency, and in 1994 he became a full member of it. In 2000-2001, Carl de Keyzer worked on his "Zona" series documenting the lives of 40 out of 135 colonies of the Krasnoyarsk Territory. In the preface to his work the photographer wrote: "I had pretty dismal ideas about these prison camps. I imagined everything in black and white, dark pictures, tortures... But they are more like Disneyland. You enter through a gate decorated with carved soldiers made by prisoners. On the walls there are huge paintings depicting the outstanding moments of Russian history of the Middle Ages or even earlier, at the gate at the entrance there is a huge locomotive, windmills with Don Quixote, an Egyptian pyramid. As if this is the entrance to an amusement park" (Keyzer, 2003).

Hoping to meet the harsh Siberian prison culture of the 20th century, the image of which was firmly anchored in the Soviet literature, Carl de Keyzer met with the prison culture of the 21st century, more civilized, but no less interesting. The image of a contemporary

Siberian prison Carl de Keyzer reveals through the phenomenon of the prison camp architecture. The author compares gray uniform of prisoners with colourful icons and carpets, boredom and monotony of everyday life in prison - with bright blue prison bars, garish coloured blankets and pajamas. Despite the fact that in Siberia of the 21st century Carl de Keyzer has not found that prison Solzhenitsyn wrote about, he managed to capture the image of the Siberian captivity that was relevant in the culture of the 20th century. "Zone" of Carl de Keyzer shows the impossibility, ineffectiveness and absurdity of a dialogue between a public institution and a person (even if this person has the status of a prisoner), as well as the culture of a prison life as an instrument of propaganda of advantages of the post-Soviet correctional system in the eyes of the Western mass media (right before the arrival of Carl de Keyzer in Siberia, authorities in prisons of the Krasnoyarsk Territory made repairs, thinking that this would show them as humane and civilized institutions).

A photo researcher Irina Popova notes, "Pictures of Carl de Keyzer are the documentation of inventions, layering and absurd worlds. His interest in Russia began even before the collapse of the USSR, when it was not allowed to photograph anything. We are now amazed to hear stories of our photographers who visited North Korea. But stories of the Western photographers photographing Russia sound exactly the same. The world that imitates itself. A photograph that documents not absurdity of the world, but the absurdity of its self-presentation. Their idea of the beautiful, important and right, even within such a world as a prison camp. And although the Gulag does not exist anymore, on the gate area there are still signs with the year of its foundation - "1934", "1937" (Popova, 2014).

Transformation of culture and life of the Siberian ethnoses in the work "People of Siberia" by Claudine Doury (1996-1998)

Even before the Russians came to Siberia, the indigenous peoples lived in its huge, seemingly unpopulated areas. Ethnographers, anthropologists, writers, artists and photographers have always been attracted to the life and culture of the indigenous peoples of the North of Siberia, who from the earliest times preserved the original way of life, traditional economy, etc. The fact that the greatest number of the Northern indigenous peoples has always lived in Russia formed an exotic, alluring image of our country, Siberia in particular, which is adjacent to the Far North regions.

Since the 1990s of the 20th century the term of "global transformation" has been used regarding the Indigenous peoples. This term is associated with the new stage of globalization and changes in the basic forms of social, economic and cultural activities of various ethnoses of Siberia. One of the interesting visual researches of the "global transformations" in the 1990s is the work of Claudine Doury called "People of Siberia".

Claudine Doury is a French photographer born in 1959 in Blois. Currently she lives in Paris and is a member of the VU photo agency. From 1996 to 1998 Claudine Doury travelled to Siberia starting from the Amur River to the Northern territories studying life of the small-numbered indigenous peoples, learning their identity, traditions, culture and a way of life, which in the 20th century became closely connected with the modern world and transformed due to political, social and cultural changes in the Soviet Union.

"I was always very interested in Russia", Claudine Doury wrote in the preface to her "People of Siberia" series. "I decided to learn Russian when I went to school. Later, in 1989, I became a photographer. During this period

significant changes were happening in Russia. So first thing I decided to take a trip to the Amur River. I think it was because of its name. And later I completed my first big story titled "People of Siberia" (Tuminas, 2010).

The "People of Siberia" series by Claudine Doury is a documentary essay about the life of the Evenki, Nenets, Buryats and other indigenous peoples of Siberia, made in black-and-white colours. The author does not focus on the analysis of everyday life of a single ethnic group, but shows Siberia as a territory that is a historical fusion of different cultures, traditions and ethnoses. The object of the study of Claudine Doury is the cultural and social transformation happening with dwellers of tundra, taiga and steppe. On the one hand, the photographer captures the traditional way of life: the pictures show chums of the Evenki, national costumes and dances, deer and walrus hunting, etc. On the other hand, Claudine Doury draws attention to the impact of the modern (mostly Soviet) culture on lives of the indigenous peoples of Southern Siberia: along with traditional clothes the everyday life of the Buryats includes colourful Chinese gowns and cheap children's dresses, jackets and rubber boots, a game of dominoes; steppe inhabitants become dwellers of the city.

A critic Ange-Dominique Bouzet on the "People of Siberia": "Claudine Doury does not seek to keep away from the modern life and culture of the indigenous peoples that she saw. She captures the cold of the polar region in winter and a beach of Baikal Lake in summer when the temperature reaches +35° C, a group of young people in shorts and national costumes of the indigenous peoples, horses on a farm and people on motorcycles, modern villages and the devastating consequences of alcoholism among men" (Bouzet, 2010).

The photographs by Claudine Doury display a context of life of the indigenous small-

numbered peoples of Siberia through simple stories of everyday life of women and men, the author shows a modern, rapidly changing world and vanishing cultural heritage of the Evenki, Buryats, Nenets, etc. The series of Claudine Doury shows that the indigenous peoples of Siberia are vulnerable, but they are still alive despite the difficult economic and political conditions of life.

Existential motifs in the image

of Siberia in the "RUS" project by Gert Jochems (2001-2005)

Of all the photographic works on Siberia a great attention should be paid on a series of a Belgian photographer Gert Jochems born in 1969. Currently the photographer lives in Antwerp and is a member of the VU agency, one of the most prestigious photo agencies in the world. Gert Jochems studied photography at the Academy of Visual Arts in Ghent. Independent long-term projects have always been in the centre of his professional attention. The photographer worked on one such project about Russia from 2001 to 2005 having visited Russia seven times and stayed for about a year in total. The author's interest is focused on remote areas of Siberia and the Far East. The Siberian project by Gert Jochems titled "RUS" has received great recognition in Europe; it was exhibited in the Fotomuseum Antwerp and published in a book of the same name that can now be purchased at a high price from collectors or dealers. In Siberia, the project was exhibited in 2013 as a part of the exhibition project "Foreign photographers on Russia: Volume 1: Dutch and Flemish authors" curated by the photo researcher Irina Popova.

The "RUS" project by Gert Jochems is a documentary series consisting of both colour panoramic photographs and black-and-white genre pictures, which "reflect an implicit side of reality and are devoted to human survival in the

harsh natural and economic conditions" (Gert Jochems in Russia, 2013)

At first glance this series does not have an organized structure and logic, but it is like a mosaic set of plots pulled out by the author from everyday life of Siberian backwoods. Gert Jochems explained his work as follows: "Why Siberia? I think because it is an area about which we know very little <...> I have not learned Russian because I wanted to study the subject only in a visual way. In a sense, I'm a photographer without a theme. Of course, Russia and Siberia is a theme, but it can be approached from thousands angles. In my head there were basic themes, such as love, death, life, loneliness, etc." (Ooms, 2005)

The image of Siberia in the "RUS" series by Gert Jochems is not just an image of a territory, but an image of a dislocated, broken state of the post-communist Russian society in a deep crisis. A critic I. Henneman noted that the "RUS" project is "a collage of images that refers to the experience of living in the Gulag both physically and mentally" (Henneman, 2004).

Gert Jochems chooses Siberia as the object of his study of Russian, and it is no coincidence. Firstly, in his opinion, this territory is a place with the most extreme social and climatic conditions of life for people and, secondly, because of the territorial extent Siberia becomes a metaphor for loneliness and alienation. Gert Jochems uses a black and white film that allows the author to emphasize contrasts of life in Siberian backwoods, build a parallel between light and darkness, life and death, happiness and suffering, etc, which contributes to the formation of dark and morbid image of Siberia. According to the researcher Irina Popova, "Gert Jochems focused on a surreal world of the unknown, black and white Siberian town. It seems that the black and white granularity is not a property of the photograph, but of the place where it was taken" (Popova, 2014). Coarse granularity, absurd scenes of the photographs

allowing the viewer to fantasize form a timeless poetic reality of the series.

The image of Siberia in the "RUS" series also consists of the following elements: intensive and unnatural gestures of the characters of the photographs, surrealistic contrast between a figure of the character and the surroundings, poor interiors and restrained landscapes. Gert Jochems seeks to show Siberia not only in a social aspect, but also in an existential one through touching a topic of a painful relationship between a man and nature, a man and society.

A researcher Saskia Ooms writes, "His photographs are the alienated society balancing between the past and the present. Black and white photographs can be considered as a document that shows the terrible conditions of existence. He [the author] offers a personal perspective of an astonished passerby <...> Photographs are rigid and made without compromise, but nevertheless Gert Jochems shows himself as a humanist in this work. He shows the reality very honestly" (Ooms, 2005).

Studies of a social and cultural life of Siberia in the 21st century in projects

of young photographers from Europe

At the turn of the 20th-21st centuries photography found a new generation of photographers who were focused on the specifics of the social, economic and cultural life of a rapidly changing world. Globalization and the ability to go anywhere in the world, the availability of airplane and train tickets gave rise to a new interest in Siberia among European photographers. In the new century, they perceived this part of the world not as a wild and unattractive area, but as a part of the modern world that, however, had specific features and an exotic charm. For young photographers of the early 21st century an associative link "Siberia/cold" still remains strong: the works we have considered

were photographed in the cold season, and winter is shown by the authors in a romantic way, as a symbol of Siberia. But, nevertheless, their image of the territory is based on the analysis of a social and cultural state of regions in the new century.

Thus, a Polish photographer Rafal Milach dedicated six years to describe a post-Soviet Russia travelling between Krasnoyarsk, Yekaterinburg and Moscow. His documentary series "7 Rooms" created in 2004-2005 was the winner of the international competition "Picture of the year" in the "Best photo book" nomination. Rafal Milach travelled to Siberia several times, but in one of the interviews he told that at the beginning of work on the series he thought of Siberia in terms of the stereotype, "When I first went to the Baikal region to stay with relatives, my head was really full of stereotypes. Bears with balalaika in one paw, and a bottle of vodka in another and so on. Ironically, my first visit was during summer: I came to Novosibirsk wearing winter boots when it was almost 40 degrees Celsius above zero. I had to run to the store to buy summer clothes. But the next times I came only in winter, and I loved it! I tried to catch the coldest months. But even climatic love is not a defining moment for me. If I find good people during a trip, a place automatically becomes cool for me" (Gruzdeva, 2012).

The image of Siberia in the "7 Rooms" series by Rafal Milach is an image of a post-Soviet Russia from which Siberia becomes inseparable for the author. In his work Rafal Milach does not focus on the climatic features of Siberia (although winter landscapes are present in his project), he reveals the image of the territory through the portraits of a new generation of Siberians born in the USSR, but grown up in the 2000s. A critic Lisa Faktor writes, "In their thirties, they became intermediaries for him between the ineradicable Soviet mentality and the growing concern of today's Russia. It is almost impossible to visually reproduce the searches of

Rafal Milach. And yet, in this book we discover the fascinating and subtle image of a lost way, sad and magnetic connection with our country" (Faktor, 2005). The following signs in the photographs by Rafal Milach point to the Soviet period: hammer and sickle on the roof of a Khruschev-era house, Soviet tanks in a city yard, an old telephone model, etc. But portraits of the characters in Rafal Milach's photographs are taken in new interiors and stylistically refer to the post-Soviet era. We can say that Rafal Milach explores the socio-cultural life of people both in Siberia and Russia and shows a modern image of the territory where life does not stop with the arrival of winter.

Another work that studies the social and cultural side of life in Siberia is the "Siberian supermodels" created by a British photographer Anastasia Taylor-Lind in 2011. It received the first prize in the category "History in Pictures" at one of the biggest competitions of photojournalism called Pictures of the Year International. The photographer travelled together with a selection committee of the modelling agency Noah Models International to cities located along the Trans-Siberian Railway documenting searches of Noah Models International agents for new faces in the fashion business. Anastasia Taylor-Lind wrote, "Supermodels gracing the pages of glossy magazines and runways of London, Paris, New York during fashion weeks, perhaps, are the most photographed women in the world. The most noticeable, the most recognizable. Yet we rarely know anything about the daily lives of those who pout on the pages of glossy magazines and billboards" (Taylor Lind, 2011).

The "Siberian supermodels" series unfolds in the urban space: the photographer photograph modelling auditions and shows in Krasnoyarsk and Novosibirsk, sleeping areas of the cities and cultural centres where they were looking for "new faces for the multimillion-dollar brands". The image of Siberia in this work is the image

of a dull territory separated from the capitals of the world fashion industry, the image of the province where social conditions do not allow girls to fulfil themselves in the fashion modelling profession. But, on the other hand, the "Siberian Supermodels" by Anastasia Taylor-Lind is a story about childhood, teenage dreams and illusions, incompatibility of everyday life and the world of the large modelling business.

A 2013 photo series "Dikson. Borders of the ice" by a Swiss photographer Beat Schweizer explores living and working conditions in the Northern settlement of Siberia - Dikson with the extremely harsh climatic conditions. Beat Schweizer photographed his series in winter, but the harsh climate becomes a good reason for him to talk about people who have to adapt to life, work and raise families in low temperature conditions. The photographer captures not only the ice borders of the northernmost settlement of Siberia, but also shows the boundary between a warm space - an apartment, a house -and a cold one - the external world of the settlement. Winter landscapes are replaced by the documentary portraits of Dikson residents who are engaged in the most mundane things: they are having lunch, sorting out documents, repairing a car, working at a computer, selling goods behind the counter, etc. The overall tone of the "Dikson. Borders of the ice" project is bright; the cold and winter are pictured in a romantic way, and refer to the image of Siberia not as a territory where life and happiness is impossible, but as a special, unique place where winter becomes the main town- and life-forming phenomenon.

In this respect it is pertinent to use a comment of a famous explorer of Siberia N.M. Yadrintsev who wrote, "Occupying a large area Siberia quite naturally contains an extraordinary diversity of climates. Brutal colds, long winters and short summers in Northern Siberia are gradually replaced by a relatively temperate climate in South, but in the very South there are such corners that have a warm, good nature. In general, climate of Siberia is surely severe; winters are usually very cold, even in the Southern part of it; yet climatic conditions do not make it impossible for human life anywhere in Siberia" (Yadrintsev, 2000).


Having analyzed the strongest and most well-known works on Siberia by foreign photographers - Steeve Iuncker, Carl De Keyzer, Claudine Doury, Gert Jochems, Rafal Milach, Anastasia Taylor-Lind, Beat Schweizer - we can draw the following conclusions. Firstly, all of the authors try to show Siberia as a single territory and do not focus on individual regions and places. It is important for them to reveal the image of Siberia as a whole. Secondly, some photographers (Steeve Iuncker, Carl de Keyzer, Gert Jochems) select historical myths and stereotypes about Siberia - "cold", "prison", "backwoods" - as a basis of their themes and ideas. Thirdly, it should be noted that the works of young photographers created in the 2000s do not rely on myths about Siberia, but choose a social and cultural status of the territory as the main subject of their study, emphasize modern problems of Siberia and its inhabitants.


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Образ Сибири в современной зарубежной фотографии (90-е гг. XX в. - 10-е гг. XXI в.)

А.С. Груздева

Сибирский федеральный университет Россия, 660041, Красноярск, пр. Свободный, 79

В статье рассматриваются наиболее сильные и известные работы зарубежных фотографов конца XX - начала XXI века о Сибири: Карла де Кейзера, Клодин Дори, Стива Янкера, Рафала Милаха, Герта Йохемса и др. Сибирь как в культуре России, так и в культуре Запада зачастую рассматривается как особенная, «другая» территория, «царство холода и мрака» или богатая, благодатная земля. Поэтому в данной статье мы попытались проанализировать, какой образ Сибири формируется в работах зарубежных фотографов конца XX - начала XXI века, опираются ли они в работе на исторически сложившиеся представления об этой земле, используют ли ассоциативные связи Сибирь/холод, Сибирь/ссылка, на чем делают акценты в своих фотоработах. Фотография сегодня является самостоятельным видом искусства, мощным исследовательским инструментом, позволяющим увидеть Сибирь глазами иностранных авторов и расширить наши привычные представления об этой земле.

Ключевые слова: Сибирь, образ, климат, тюрьма, фотография.

Научная специальность: 24.00.00 - культурология.

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