Abkhazia/Georgia, 2011-2013
Project by Oksana Yushko and Arthur Bondar

We had a strange feeling on the border with a self-proclaimed country in Caucasus, Abkhazia, well-known for its ancient traditions of hospitality. We discovered what had happened after Abkhaz politicians drew a border, moved Georgian nationals out of their houses, posted 'Occupied' signs on their doors and closed their minds to the rest of the world...We observed the consequences of the war with Georgia, of a long period of economic blockade, Russian money influence, political propaganda and borders in people's minds.

Coming back to Sukhumi we were picked up by bridge builders who just had finished their work and celebrated that with local villagers. They connected banks, opposite sides of roads, and never thought that one day they could see a sign of the Ingur river with traces of bullets and the borderline ruined all their work, hopes and future, and made such a great distance between the two nations.

The former parliament building in Sukhumi stays destroyed since the war in Abkhazia (1992-1993). After the Soviet Union was dissolved in September 1991, the Abkhazians were involved in an armed conflict with the Georgians, a neighboring ethnic group.