Krievi – the Latvian name for Russians – is a documentary project about the Russian community of Latvia. Historically, Latvia has always had strong bonds with the Russian Federation. Modest in size, the country has been largely dependent on its big neighbour, which has defined Latvia’s political climate and economic development.
In the 20th century, the period of independence was glorious but brief; having gained autonomy in 1918, Latvia was compelled to join the Soviet Union at the outbreak of World War II. Highly centralized, the USSR was effectively functioning as a single country, which contributed to the high level of internal migration. During the Soviet era, the number of Russians permanently living in Latvia increased by nearly five fold. The largest ethnic minority in the country, Russians currently form approximately one third of the Latvian population.
Different generations, unique destinies, diverse experiences and contrasting opinions brought together in this body of work draw a complex image of the lives of Russians in contemporary Latvia.
Tina Remiz is a documentary storyteller and visual artist of Latvian origin, currently residing in the UK’s capital. Trained as a photographer and journalist, Remiz works across a wide range of creative platforms, choosing the most effective combination of mediums to tell the story. A lot of Remiz’s personal work is concerned with the issues of migration and cultural identity, as she reflects on the personal experience of growing up in the post-Soviet Latvia and immigrating to the West in her late teens.
As part of a creative collaboration between SLIDELUCK London and DEVELOP Photo, a selection of the stories presented at the closing night of the FORMAT International Photography Festival in April 2013 are being spotlighted on DEVELOP Tube.
Slideluck is a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to building and strengthening community through food and art. Slideluck operates multimedia slideshows combined with potluck dinners in about fifty cities around the world. slideluck.com
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This video is part of the DEVELOP Tube Channel which can be found at DEVELOP Tube: Photography to Watch. DEVELOP Tube is an educational resource which features interviews, profiles, lectures & films about photojournalism, fine art photography & documentary photography.