Altai by Nadezhda Krylova

Nadezhda Krylova (Areshina) was born in 1986 in St. Petersburg. She studied Documentary Photography at the School of Modern Photography Docdocdoc in St. Petersburg between 2019 and 2021.
The Altai New Year is Chaga Bayram, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2020. In the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents gathered as families or in professional community centres to celebrate the new year. Teachers gathered in a school classroom. They dressed up in national costumes and brought treats that they had prepared in advance. Afterwards, they sent a video of the celebrations to the main social media chat of Kosh-Agach village.

Nadezhda Krylova (Areshina) was born in 1986 in St. Petersburg. She studied Documentary Photography at the School of Modern Photography Docdocdoc in St. Petersburg between 2019 and 2021.

She centres her works around the topics of identity as well as the relationship between the personal and the social borders, and takes great interest in different cultures and societies. Finalist – LensCulture Portrait awards, Shortlisted – the Felix Schoeller Photo Award, Sony World Photography Awards 2022, Julia Margareth Cameron award, Semi-finalist – Head On Portrait Award 2021, winner – BEARR Trust 30th Anniversary Photography Competition “Side by Side”.

Gulchehra, Adema, Rayana, Amina, Adelina, Medina, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021.
Preparing for a wedding ritual with the Kazakhs – «zavodiny». The families of the three brothers gathered at their parents’ house to prepare a feast. While the adults are preparing food, the children are playing. The Kazakh families’ faith is islam. The older brothers and their families uphold the traditions and religious rituals of islam. The youngest brother does not reside permanently in Kosh-Agach; he brought his bride to his parents’ house in order to fulfill his parents’ wishes and have the wedding ritual in accordance with the religious precepts and traditions.

Denis, Nizhnekamenka village, Altaisky krai, 2020. The migration of Russians towards Altai was an impulsive act and occurred in the light of the government policy of mass population transfers and repressions. The beginning of this process originates from the colonisation of the Altai territories between the late 17th century and the early 18th century.

The Altai New Year is Chaga Bayram, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2020. In the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents gathered as families or in professional community centres to celebrate the new year. Teachers gathered in a school classroom. They dressed up in national costumes and brought treats that they had prepared in advance. Afterwards, they sent a video of the celebrations to the main social media chat of Kosh-Agach village.

The Ognevs, Kuyacha village, Altaisky krai, 2020. An Old Ritualist family next to their house in Kuyacha. Recently the family celebrated the wedding of their son Dmitry. A wooden construction was built next to the house to accommodate the guests and hold the celebration. The village of Kuyacha was established by Old Believer settlers. In the middle of the 17th century Altai became a refuge for Old Believers fleeing from brutal persecution of tsarist authorities. The village exists still, located high up the mountains, with a difficult mountain trail leading to it.

Zavodiny, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Zavodiny is the Kazakh wedding ceremony. The guests gather at the groom’s parental house.

Blinnaya Skovoroda, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Blinnaya Skovoroda café in Kosh-Agach. Aina, the owner of the café, is Telengit; her husband works as a manager is a sports school.

Zavodiny, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Zavodiny is the Kazakh wedding ceremony. After the official ceremony the guests have gathered at a café for celebrations. The banquet at the café is carried out in European style; there is a host orchestrating the celebrations; the guests are entertained by a series of competitions and dancing and are treated to traditional milk tea and mutton dishes.

Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2020. Kosh-Agach is the most remote district from the Altai Republic capital. It lies within the permafrost zone similar to the Far North regions. Due to its remoteness and and inaccessible, the region has preserved its cultural and spiritual identity. The symbols of Kosh-Agach are a yak, a camel, and an eagle.

Bulat, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Bulat lives in Kosh-Agach and works as a taxi driver. He is Kazakh and muslim. His sun had gone off to study and work at another region.

Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. The Altai New Year is Chaga Bayram. In the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents gathered as families or in professional community centres to celebrate the new year. Teachers gathered in a school classroom. They dressed up in national costumes and brought treats that they had prepared in advance. Afterwards, they sent a video of the celebrations to the main social media chat of Kosh-Agach village.

Yergana, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. A security guard in the Kosh-Agach sports school seen during a national wrestling competition. Competition of the national wrestling Kuresh is held as part of the celebration of Chaga Bayram by the Telengits in the week after the new year. Usually the competition takes place at the central square of the village. However, after welcoming the new year 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the competition was moved to the school gym.

The teachers, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. The Altai New Year is Chaga Bayram. In the year of the COVID-19 pandemic, residents gathered as families or in professional community centres to celebrate the new year. Teachers gathered in a school classroom. They dressed up in national costumes and brought treats that they had prepared in advance. Afterwards, they sent a video of the celebrations to the main social media chat of Kosh-Agach village.

Aina. Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. The owner of the Blinnaya Skovoroda café in Kosh-Agach. Aina is Telengit by nationality. Telengits are one of the indigenous ethnic groups of Altai. Modern Telengits’ ancestors were steppe nomads. Telengits believe in spirits of mountains, lakes, forests, and fire; they uphold pagan traditions and carry out shaman rituals.

Zavodiny, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. The bride at the celebration of the Kazakh wedding ceremony (zavodiny). Her parents cover her head and shoulders with a white shawl made in the national traditional fashion.

Gorno-Altaisk, Altai republic, 2020. Corno-Altaisk is the capital of the Altai Republic. It is the only city within the region. The history of the city goes back to the beginning of the 19th century, when there was a small settlement of Teleuts on the site of modern Gorno-Altaisk. The first Russian settlers moved here and founded the village of Ulala. Its further development was closely connected with the work of the Altai Orthodox mission.

Natalia, Kamlak village, Altai republic, 2020. Natalia lives in the village of Kamlak. She is a school teacher. After the collapse of the USSR she and her husband opened a groceries shop. Natalia is a descendent of the Tubalar people.

Kirill Vlasovich, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Kirill Vlasovich works as a manager is a sports school.

Sofia and Zakhar, Aktash village, Altai republic, 2020. Sofia and Zahar helping their parents around the café.

Aidomir and Zhanomir, Altai republic, 2020. Kazakhs children together with their parents and grandmother in the hayfield. While the head of the family is working, the children with their mother and grandmother spend time in the open field. Next to the tent they built a table and put out the food they brought from home. The main occupation of the Kazakhs is cattle breeding.

Aidomir and Zhanomir, Altai republic, 2020. Kazakhs children together with their parents and grandmother in the hayfield. While the head of the family is working, the children with their mother and grandmother spend time in the open field. Next to the tent they built a table and put out the food they brought from home. The main occupation of the Kazakhs is cattle breeding.

Tamirka and Archinaika, Muhor-Tarhata village, Altai republic, 2020.

Bairam, Muhor-Tarhata village, Altai republic, 2020. Bairam is a performer of traditional throat singing.

Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2020. Kosh-Agach is the most remote district from the Altai Republic capital. It lies on the border between Altai and Mongolia, China and Kazakhstan. It lies within the permafrost zone similar to the Far North regions.

Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2020. The owner of the barbershop is a Kazakh. Her mother Valentina is the owner of a cafe, and her aunt’s husband is a potato king. In kosh-agach, they say that Kazakhs are very enterprising and active people. The Altai people are nomadic and depend more on external circumstances and follow where the wind blows.

Elena, Kosh-Agach village, Altai republic, 2021. Kolibri nightclub in Kosh-Agach village. There are three nightlife places in Kosh-Agach. In addition to Kolibri there are snooker clubs and the Sakura sushi bar.

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Dodho Magazine accepts submissions from emerging and professional photographers from around the world.
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