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A moon of nickel and ice

A moon of nickel and ice

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. “Norilsk Golgotha Memorial Compleх” is one of the graves of victims of political repressions.

An Unforgiven land, scarred by human souls who traded their captivity for a bright hope.
Norilsk is a unique city in the Siberian Arctic, built here by the victims of the GULAG. Once you get here, you will lose touch with reality; when you come back from Norilsk, you will never be the same. Birds do not sing here, trees do not grow, permafrost rules here, where there is an eternal war between man and metal. Life here is like on the Moon. Every day is an unequal battle, first of all, with yourself and the nature.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. There is a memorial symbol that people were dying for metal.

People respond to extreme frosts, severe blizzards and the burning darkness of the polar night with harmful emissions from the city-forming mining and metallurgical enterprises of the giants. For some, Norilsk is the only way to earn money, while others are attracted by the romance of the North, but absolutely everyone dreams of leaving here. However, the city is in no hurry to let go, it is in its power to give happiness and take away happiness.

All this is watched by the Moon in a doomed way, hitting you in the back with neon light, hurrying you. Inside it the ruins, the emptiness. She knows what color your dream is, knows the taste of freedom, knows that no one can save us from ourselves. Soon it will be gone forever, to be reborn, to breathe the grass again.

Meanwhile, the Moon sighs proudly, but is silent and prays tirelessly.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Ghost town in the middle of nowhere.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Bullfinches will not come here in winter – there are only lanterns around the perimeter.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. There is metal trees.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Metal hints who is the main in the city.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Abandoned empty places keep the history of this city.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. The city is full of unusual things. A rusty hatch in the middle of the city is  not a big deal.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Power lines are like people on which the whole city exists.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Old stone house in the industrial area of the city.

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Industrial equipment is everywhere (gas bottle and fittings).

Russia, Norilsk – February 2020. Fork in the road. There is only 2400 km to the North Pole.

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Ann Nikonenok

My name is Ann, I am a free artist from Siberia. Photography for me is the best way to be in the moment. I believe that the camera in my hands can change the world through beauty and mindfulness.


  1. Очень рада, если у вас откликается? Спасибо❣️

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