The photos of this series of photo collages were taken in Saint Petersburg, Russia. I spent a few days wandering around the suburbs of this huge city and got “lost” among tall buildings and neighborhoods, being attracted by the repetitive look of the blocks of flats, of the scanty gardens and shabby aspects of the façades nearly all in a dilapidated state. The only people I met were elderly, retired people who were sitting on benches in front of the buildings, walking slowly home or coming back from shopping.
The idea I had while editing the material was to build possible stories by joining and combining images of windows, looking onto the streets of these poor suburban post-soviet neighborhoods, with images of the people, living in these areas. It was a way of documenting fragments of their lives caught in a fleeting moment.
I liked the idea of figuring out that, behind those windows, hidden ordinary, everyday stories unfold, which are in some way important and worth being told, although they usually never are.
I used a simple method (which calls to mind the experiments of the Dadaist school) inserting the black and white photos of the people within the “natural” frames represented by the windows, which are in color.
By Mara Dani