top of page

TERROR AND PEACE. A documentary project by Heorhiy Ivanchenko

From the first months of the invasion, the Ukrainian documentary filmmaker and member of the Association began shooting for the Associated Press and the European Pressphoto Agency. Starting with Borodyansky district, where Heorhiy was born, and continuing his journey along the frontline: Mykolaiv, Kharkiv, Kherson, and now his attention is focused on Donetsk region. The turning point in his photography was when he spent almost a month in Bakhmut. In December and January, he documented the lives of the townspeople with a backpack and a sleeping bag, sharing his life with locals in basements, volunteers, medics, military, and firefighters.


As part of the UAPF's grant support for documentary photographers, implemented with the support of the International Press Institute, we continue to share documentary projects by photographers.

 


"I am everywhere, but it is difficult to feel or see me.

Many people want me,

but not everyone understands what I can be.

My essence is eternity,

sealed in a tree,

in the steppe,

in the earth,

and often stands beside me

as the sun goes down,

-is death."

Ecclesiastes 3:17-19


- I think this is how peace would describe itself if it could say anything.


17 I have said in my heart: "God will judge the just

and the unjust, for there is a time for every

to every thing.


18 I have said in my heart: This is for the sons of men,

that God may try them, and that he may see that they are like the beasts,


19 For the destiny of the sons of men and the destiny of the beasts is the same

For as these die, so shall they die, and for all.


And in the breath of one sigh, and there is no man above the beast,

for all is vanity.


The book of Ecclesiastes, or the preacher, 3:17-19



There is a time for everything, and an hour for every thing under heaven:

A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to tear up,

a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to destroy and a time to build,

a time to cry and a time to laugh, a time to weep and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones, a time to embrace and a time to shun embraces, a time to seek and a time to lose, a time to gather and a time to scatter,

a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace!


The book of Ecclesiastes, or the preacher, 3:1-8




A lot has changed. The stage of horror is over, the resources have been saturated with information, everything is mixed, running non-stop.


We are getting used to the bloody pictures, the epic artillery work and the constant arrivals and fires, we have seen what war is from all its literal angles.


These images offer us a pause in the landscape, and in pure death, which is more intimate and perhaps a little romanticised, but realistic and harsh at the same time.



7 And again I saw futility under the sun:


8 He is alone, and has no one else, no son or brother, and there is no end to all his labour, and the eye cannot be satisfied with his riches, and he is not a story: For whom do I care, and deprive my soul of good things? All these things are vain, and labour in vain.


9 Better are two than one, for they have a good wage for their labour,


10 And if they fall, the one will lift up his friend: but woe to the one, if he fall, and there is no other to lift him up


11 And if two men lay down, they shall be warm: but how shall one man be warm?


12 And if any man come against one, they will come against him with two: and the threefold thread shall not soon be broken.

Ecclesiastes 4:7-12




6 Sow your seed in the morning, and do not let your hand rest in the evening: for you know not which shall be more profitable to you, this or that, or both equally good.

7 And the light is sweet, and it is good for the eyes to see the sun,

8 And if a man live many years, let him rejoice in them all, and remember the days of darkness: for they shall be many, and all that shall come shall be vain.

9 Rejoice, O young man, in your youth, and let your heart and let your heart be merry in the days of your youth.

And walk in the ways of your heart, and in the precepts of your eyes, but know that God will bring you into judgement for all these things.


10 Therefore cast out sorrow from your heart, and put away all evil from your body: for both childhood and the early dawn of life are vanity.

The book of Ecclesiastes, or the preacher, 11:6-10



I add lines from the book of Ecclesiastes to deepen the viewer's understanding of the value and principle of life, which can be interrupted at any moment.


And in the definition of the word "God", I put a more pantheistic doctrine of seeing the world, thus immersing it in the context of nature as something higher and divine.




4 He who is among the living has hope: for it is better for a dog to live than for a lion to die.

5 For the living know that they will die, but the dead know nothing, and there is no recompense for them, for their memory is forgotten,

6 And their love, and their hatred, and their envy, are perished, and they have no part for ever in any thing that is under the sun.

7 Go, therefore, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a glad heart, since God has pleased you in your deeds.

8 Let your clothes be white at all times, and let there be no lack of oil on your head.

9 You shall live with the woman you love all the days of your labour, which God has given you under the sun, all the days of your labour: for this is your portion in life and in your labour, which you shall do under the sun.

The book of Ecclesiastes, or the preacher, 9:4-9




Landscapes of Donetsk and Slobozhanshchyna.

The photos were taken in November-December 2023.

With this material, I want to thank the work of forensic scientists, warriors, rescuers, and other living beings who experience this kind of specific pain.

Comments


bottom of page