Transnistria is an internationally unrecognised region that has declared itself independent. Transnistria remains de jure part of the Republic of Moldova, although the government has no control over the region. Hence the area remains an island of Russian influence in the immediate vicinity of the borders of the EU, and is a kind of time bubble reminiscent of the Soviet era, which is evident primarily in the mentality of the people.
Being born in the forgotten and unrecognised region of Transnistria in eastern Moldova as an LGBTQ person is difficult and often dangerous. The majoritarian discourse considers homosexuality as an unhealthy deviation from the norm and as something that is never discussed. In Transnistria, there is silence about different sexual orientations as well as about physical attacks on members of the LGBTQ community. Carolina Dutca is trying to break the taboo through No Silence, an ongoing photography series with accompanying quotations from 17 people dealing with an internal struggle between their nature and the expectations of their society; a struggle to find their place and identity in a world that is not yet ready to accept them. In her native Transnistria, the exhibition sparked a great deal of discussion after it had to be canceled due to pressure from local police — including threats to Dutca and her family. No Silence is the first documentary photography project dedicated to LGBTQ life in one of the New East’s most openly homophobic regions.