Pavel Bukreev

2017 - 2018

Moscow, Russia; Van, Turkey; Iğdır, Turkey; Mardin, Turkey

The cosmogonic term Nibiru takes its name in the ancient Sumerian-Akkadian mythology.

It is translated originally as : the point of crossing.

Being an Assyrian on the father's side, I was always intrigued by the culture of this ancient people. My grandmother spoke, wrote and read in the Assyrian language. Her parents, my great-grandmother and great-grandfather as well as early generations of my ancestors lived in Van Province, Turkey. They were expelled from their land by the Ottoman Empire in 1914. Part of the project was shoot in the provinces of Van, Igdir, Mardin, Midyat, Hasankeyf, Turkey.

Assyria was located in the upper Mesopotamia. It’s territory included the lands of Northern Iraq, Southeastern Turkey, Northeastern Syria and Northwestern Iran. Time has wiped this state off the map. Like the comet split into tens of thousands of meteors entering the atmosphere of the earth, the Assyrians over centuries scattered around the globe. Currently there are about four million of Assyrians in the world. Two and a half million of them speak Aramaic language in its modern. Aramaic was the official language of the Assyrian empire in the 8th century BC.

We still use in everyday life a lot of things created in the Middle East such as, for example, names of the constellations which were invented in ancient Mesopotamia. Sacred stones , each of which corresponds to a particular constellation, were used by the ancient Assyrians both in magical rituals and in amulets, healing elixirs and seals. These stones are still used in jewellery.

In this work I draw parallels between the past and the present, between myth and reality.

Looking for my roots, from personal stories told by different individuals, historic facts and my own representations, i build a jigsaw puzzle, a sort of constellation called Assyria. Turning to dreams, I try to visually convey through photography that long-gone world of the enchanting East which is so close to my soul.

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  • North Mesopotamia

  • Ferit

  • Pomegranate still life

  • Per aspera ad astra

  • Birth

  • Nargis

  • Unity without borders

  • Refraction

  • Irkalla

  • Hasankeyf

  • Lamassu

  • Barutu

  • Ziggurat

  • Quinces & apple stilllife

  • Ira

  • Ephraim

  • Magicape

  • Flag

  • Ishtar gate

  • Agate