Shortlist 2015

Oksana Yushko

Oksana Yushko is a Moscow based photographer and visual artist, currently focused on personal projects in Eastern Europe and the Baltic region. Her approach combines journalism, sociology, and anthropology, while her practise includes photography, video, and installations. Yushko was a winner of Luma Rencontres Dummy Book Award Arles 2017, NPPA 2015, Prix Bayeux Calvados 2014, BURN Magazine 2013, Lens Culture 2011, Conscientious Portfolio Competition 2010, the Aftermath Project 2010. Her works have been exhibited in galleries and published by media across the world.

The Compromise


I started this project with a photograph of my own parents: my mother is Russian and my father is Ukrainian. They met and fell in love many years ago. My friends and family and I live in two worlds, in two countries outside international borders and prejudices. Recent events have shocked us all. There are terrible things happening. But this photo series is not  about politics; it is  about people.

The ties between Russia and Ukraine have always been close in all regards: you can find Ukrainian relatives in just about any Russian family, for instance. Creating a photo series about Russian-Ukrainian couples from all over the two countries, from Western Ukraine to the Russian Far East, I try to find compromises and to show the current situation from a different point of view.

I myself never believed anything divides Russians and Ukrainians. I do not see any difference. Since I was a kid in school, I always knew that we are  in this together and I am not talking only about Russians and Ukrainians. I feel the same way traveling anywhere in the world, visiting friends in different countries. I thought I should do something, that I should say something about love and friendship, instead of war and aggression.