Following an exploratory trip to Chernobyl in 2005, Donald Weber soon returned to the abandoned site of the nuclear disaster and spent the next six years in Russia and Ukraine photographing the ruins of the unstoppable storm we call history. Traveling and living with ordinary people who had survived much, had survived everything, Weber began to see the modern State as a primitive and bloody sacrificial rite of unnamed Power.
Interrogations is the result of his personal quest to uncover the hidden meaning of the bloody 20th Century. Weber insistently and provocatively addresses his questions both to the living survivors and to the ghosts of the State’s innumerable victims, resurrecting their final hours by taking their point of view, and performing a kind of incantatory meditation over their private encounters with Power.
The policemen, working girls, thugs, dissidents and hustlers who inhabit this story are all orphans of a secret History; the outlines of our collective fate takes shape in Weber’s epic work, expanding our awareness of what it means to be an actor in today’s dark opera.
This presentation will take place in the Photoville Talk Area – located at the storefront of One Brooklyn Bridge Park at 360 Furman St Brooklyn, NY 11201.
Prior to photography, Donald Weber originally trained as an architect and worked with urban theorist Rem Koolhaas’ Office for Metropolitan Architecture (OMA) in Rotterdam, The Netherlands. He has since devoted himself to the study of how Power deploys an all-encompassing theater for its subjects; what he records is its secret collaboration with both masters and victims.
Weber is the author of two books. His first, “Bastard Eden, Our Chernobyl,” won the Photolucida Book Prize and asked a simple question: what is daily life actually like, in a post-atomic world? His latest book, “Interrogations,” about post-Soviet authority in Ukraine and Russia, was considered by many critics one of the year’s best photo books. He is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Lange-Taylor Prize, the Duke and Duchess of York Prize, two World Press Photo Awards, PDN’s 30 and was named an Emerging Photo Pioneer by American Photo.