Yevgen Nikiforov 

DECOMMUNISED (2013-)

‘Decommunised’ is a photographic project exploring the aftermath of the so-called “decommunisation” law passed by the Ukrainian Parliament in 2015 that condemned “the totalitarian Communist and Nazi regimes” and banned all related symbols and propaganda.This meant that all USSR-related imagery and Socialist Realist artwork around the country was to be demolished. In this process that became known as ‘Leninfall’, most of the centrally located monuments were almost immediately taken down, but the pressure was not as strong for the small towns and villages where some Soviet monuments can still be seen.

Kiev-based photographer Yevgen Nikiforov started to shoot and research Soviet cultural heritage in all regions of Ukraine including Crimea right after the outburst of Revolution of Dignity in late 2013 when it had become clear that the nation’s attitude towards the Soviet past has come to the point of complete reconsideration.

In Nikiforov’s own words, with this work he is aiming to “refer to a broader range of questions, such as how the visual emblems of the past still present in public spaces affect the collective memory and the ability to (de)construct historical narratives in so called Western society in large…”