Alexander Ustinov was a military photojournalist who took part in World War II. The exhibition is a result of collaboration between the photographer's daughter Ninel Ustinova and the State Museum and Exhibition Centre Rosphoto.

The Alexander Ustinov. Contacts project presents 96 pieces created during the period from the middle of the 1930s to 1942 and sheds light on the process of selecting photographs for official Soviet print media. Many of the works presented at the exhibition are displayed for the first time. They include photos made by A. Ustinov in the summer of 1939 at the Red Army military camps; in the end of 1939 on Karelian Isthmus, at the break of the Winter War between the Soviet Union and Finland; in the first half of June in 1941 in Ukraine and in 1941–1942 on the Volkhov Front near Leningrad. By bringing together the photographs created in different times and places, the exposition pinpoints the important but often seemingly unremarkable events that determined the fates of Soviet people right before the war and during the first years of the military conflict. The snapshots Ustinov made for The Red Star [Krasnaya Zvezda] and Pravda newspapers do not reflect the horrors and sufferings of the war but help a keen observer to notice what had remained uncovered by the official history.

Igor Lebedev, curator:

The exhibition highlights the problem of ideological, artistic and authorial selection. Looking at these photographs today, we must take into account a number of factors: Soviet censorship, the special provisions of a war journalist who back then had a chance to avoid the extreme hardships of war and never stayed on one place for too long.

A sound installation created for the exhibition serves as a counterpoint for the quiet mood of the majority of the photographs. It converts the memory of gunshots into sound, which in combination with the images become an unsettling element that stirs one's feelings and repeatedly reminds of the necessity of emotional responsibility.

Highlights

ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)
ПАПКА 6 (Архив Устинова)

Public program

Ninel Ustinova. Time, Events and People in the Photographs of Alexander Ustinov

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