photography: a record of solitude: the balkans refugee route: the record
in early 2015, after thousands of deaths of refugees in boat accidents in the central mediterranean, the main migration route to europe shifted eastward, treading its way across the balkan peninsula. in search of safety, the hundreds of thousands that used this route created the largest movement of people in europe since wwii.
my project attempts to document the complexity of mass migration, and is conceived as a record of solitude and abandonment framed within a sense of community and togetherness, of injustice contrasted by resolve, of shame juxtaposed against pride. rather than putting emphasis on scenes of despair, i focused on the psychological portraiture of the people on the route, trying to define their emotions as they were entangled in events utterly void of reason.
by examining the deeper moments that often went overlooked amid the chaos and the scurry that had followed this enormous crisis, my work aims to allow empathy without pity, to offer connectedness instead of conformity. the persons in my photographs are not mere victims carried by the tide of events, they are individuals with agency, men and women who bravely took matters into their own hands and did what they could to help themselves and others around them in times of extreme adversity.