Wasteland of Memory

Shortlist 2018

Svetlana Bulatova

Svetlana Bulatova is a documentary photographer from St. Petersburg, Russia. Svetlana prefers working on long-term documentary projects about human interest issues. Svetlana started out as a photographer for a charity foundation and continues to explore the subject of health, human rights for necessary medical care. She is also interested in the post-traumatic syndrome. Svetlana is a winner and finalist of various Russian photo competitions, participant of Russian and international exhibitions and workshops.

The Problem

Wasteland of Memory

In the 1930s the Soviet Union staged a campaign of extreme political repression called the Great Purge. Anyone perceived as an enemy of the state, including farmers, businessmen, clergymen, but also politicians and Party members, soldiers of the Red Army and the intelligentsia were imprisoned or executed. Bodies were often transported at night and buried in secret mass graves guarded by the KGB. One of the largest of these sites was the abandoned estate of Count Levashovo, a lot north of Saint Petersburg. For 50 years it remained closed to the public.