War lets loose all the destructive forces of mankind against itself. What kind of insanity is this? It takes away the dearest people and hope, breaks fate, ruins dreams. War takes any meaning and breeds emptiness. An emptiness that burns all around leaving just ruins. Person’s mind, traumatized after the war, reminds this deserted landscapes, that continue its existence misunderstood and forgotten, storing the memories of war.
This project is an exploration of territories of Eastern Ukraine, devastated by the war, of places that were of high importance before and during the fights, but now were standing forgotten. I visited places where I was in 2014 with the Ukrainian army, when everything there was flooded with blood and lead. Areas that witnessed bloody clashes, now stood abandoned in an absolute silence. Schools, kindergartens, hospitals, factories, checkpoints, they all look like deserted and forgotten monuments of war.
This is what usually happens with people who faced the war, with children who had to leave their homes, with soldiers who came back from the battlefields. Who won and who lost is not a question. In war, no one wins or loses. There is only destruction.
After facing the war myself, I already didn’t try to show its bloody, frightening appearance and I didn’t want to romanticize it. The commotion of death appears in these images as absolute silence.
Using landscape photography, a more intimate approach, allows me to convey the feelings more deeply. Sometimes thoughts of the past and the scars of war are much more painful for the people and the country that survived the war than the battles themselves. These feelings will never stop; they will remain for their whole lives.