Tank traps near the photographer’s house. From the series: 2402. War Diary, 2022.
Image: Lisa Bukreieva
With the Russian invasion of Ukraine, people’s lives were transformed into a new reality. The photo exhibition “The New Abnormal” documents this process from shock to acceptance.
VFrom one moment to the next, the emotional world of the Ukrainians split into a before and a during. The reality of war is forcing people to adapt their usual rules of behavior and everyday routines, as well as to reorganize their emotional states such as fear, anger and joy. In the exhibition “The New Abnormal” in the temporary House of Photography in the Deichtorhallen Hamburg, twelve Ukrainian photographers try to show this new form of life in the face of war.
Photographer Mykhaylo Palinchak recalls: “On February 24, 2022, at 5 a.m., in a dream I first heard the faint sound of sirens announcing an air raid somewhere in the distance. A few minutes later there was an explosion, a very close explosion, the windows shook. The dream disappeared without a trace. Since then, life in Ukraine has changed dramatically. The sound of the sirens has now become a constant companion. We’ve gotten used to it, but every day this sound reminds us that we’re already living in a new world.”
The exhibition is a cooperation with the Odesa Photo Days Festival, which was founded in 2015 in response to the conflict in eastern Ukraine. However, the festival, which has been held annually since then, had to be canceled due to the Russian war of aggression.
For the festival’s founder, curator Kateryna Radchenko, the exhibition is just a snapshot, because as long as the war lasts, she has no time to reflect: “I had traumatic experiences and react to certain situations in everyday life with panic attacks. And that’s just the beginning, because it’s clear the war isn’t over yet. We don’t know what will happen to us. But these little things come together. But we’re not yet reflecting on how big the impact is on us.”
The exhibition “The New Abnormal” in the PHOXXI, the temporary house of photography of the Deichtorhallen Hamburg, can still be visited until November 6, 2022. More information is available here.