Passepartout is all about documentaries and visual stuff I find worth seeing.

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A woman’s love and fulfillment: Siberian Love (2016, Dir. Olga Delane)

I loved this film, and recognized in it something Eastern, something that is familiar to me, and some of my own thoughts. Or so I thought, because after reading ┬áthe director’s statement and some interviews she gave, I feel this story is so much more than she herself actually managed to find in it.

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Beijing to Sankt Petersburg: a surreal trip made and documented by Dee O’Connell

Hey, you know what? I almost decided to show you some photos of Iceland, with that kind of isolated landscape and towns with 5 inhabitants. But then I thought: it’s almost summer and you’re probably thinking of holidays and new places to see. So I picked Dee O’Connell’s old school and charming series of a trip she made from Beijing to Sankt Petersburg. With the Trans Siberian. My kind of holiday.

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Arctic Magic: Evgenia Arbugaeva’s Idyllic Photos of a Place Called Tiksi

Wait, I know what you’re going to say: it’s spring already and you’re not so much in the mood for photos from the Arctic. But these are not just any photos, they are a magical portrayal a photographer made when she returned to the place where she grew up and which she missed.

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Norilsk

Home in an unfriendly place: a photo portrayal of life in the city of Norilsk, close to the polar circle

Here it is: Norilsk – photographed by Russian photographer Elena Chernyshova. You’ve probably never heard of the city, and there’s no particular reasons you should have. Its list of achievements include being the 7th most polluted city in the world. That’s no surprise, Norilsk is a mining city, the closest to the polar circle. Its mines and metallurgical factories were constructed by prisoners of the Gulag. All together, there’s no happy story there, and yet, there’s something charming in these photos looking into life there and, in Chernyshova’s words, looking at ‘human adaptation to extreme climate, ecological disaster and isolation’. I love the photos, their details, hidden symbols and atmosphere. But life there must be really tough.

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