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‘Life will return to them again’ A series by Ukrainian photographer Pavlo Dorohoi on houses destroyed during the war

Source: Meduza

Pavlo Dorohoi is a documentary filmmaker and photographer from Kharkiv who, before the full-scale war, also shot the architecture of his hometown. After the full-scale Russian invasion began, he stayed in Kharkiv to document the war.

Dorohoi took pictures of destroyed houses in the village of Dovhenke, on the border of the Kharkiv and Donetsk regions. Before the war began, almost 400 people lived there. By September 2022, six months of fighting near Dovhenke had reduced the village to ruins.

Russia occupied Dovhenke from June to September 2022. Now, people are returning gradually. Many ruined and deserted houses remain in Dovhenke, some of which cannot be rebuilt. Dorohoi photographed them as if life had returned.

This is what Dorohoi himself wrote on Instagram about the project:

By lighting the lights in these houses, I wanted to give them hope that one day, life will return to them again.

Hope that someday, a song and a child's laughter will be heard within these walls again.

I hope that someday there will be people inside these walls again.

By lighting candles, I wanted to remember all those who died during this time.

All those who had to leave their homes.

All those who still cannot return home.

All those who have nowhere to return to.

By lighting the candles, I wanted light to reappear in this place. I wanted it to dispel the darkness.

Because we, Ukrainians, need to be the ones who light the light. We are the ones who dispel the darkness.

We are the light!

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