Mikhail Mordasov

Mikhail Mordasov, 33, is a photojournalist. Since 2009 he has been travelling a lot over the European part of Russia. As a documentary photographer he explores both wealthy cities and distant poor villages to create the patchwork of daily russian life. In the last few years, Mordasov devoted much attention to long-term photo stories. In Sochi he worked on a project showed the city was modified to host the Olympic Games. Straight after the Games, Mordasov went to Crimea to capture the evidences of changing in the region turned from ukranian to russian property. In 2014 Mordasov founded Everyday Russian Federation account on Instagram. Every week one volunteer photographer shows one russian region and its inhabitants. The contributors are free to express themselves, and they describe russian daily life without censorship and stereotypes.  Today we share his series, Crimea.

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Crimea changed its nationality in March 2014. It passed from Ukraine to Russia. Formally this process took several days. Reforms of social institutes and society will take years.

Crimea is a kind of Island of Freedom – a place, where everyone can feel comfortable, without any frames or rules. It is a place for everyone, where your appearance, behaviour, religion and sexual orientation do not matter. The purest Black Sea, fresh, cheap and delisious food, desolate mountains with little villages, small amount of cars and people, a shore with varying landscapes where you can always find a lonely place, high sky without clouds – that is the promise land.

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People of differences come in flocks here: hippies and intellectuals, wealthies and hitchhikers, Ukrainian refugees and Moscow tourists, radical and traditional orientations, orthodoxes and buddhists, patriots and haters of current regime, nudists and muslims. All of them bask in the sun of this strange peninsula. But a north-eastern wind of changes is getting up. People are afraid of these changes but have already started to feel them.

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Graduated as a legal expert Mordasov never worked as a lawyer. He cooperated with dozens local and international news agencies, magazines and newspapers as staff or stringer photographer. His photos were published in The Washington Post, NY Times, GEO, Spiegel, Le Monde, Newsweek, BBC, Russian Reporter, Ogoniok, Forbes, Expert, Kommersant, The Boston Globe, Les Echos, Berliner Zeitung, Die Zeit, Die Presse, Reuters, AFP, AP etc. Mordasov took part in exhibitions and won several photo awards, like Sony World Photography Award, The National contests “Sporting Russia” and ”The best photographer”.

To view more of Mordasov’s work, please visit his website.