Danila Tkachenko is a visual artist working with documentary photography. He has received LensCulture Exposure prize, won Magnum’s 30 under 30 competition, World Press Photo, among others. Tkachenko was working as news photographer, and in 2011 entered the Rodchenko Moscow School of Photography and Multimedia. While studying there he realised the need to work exclusively on the artistic photo projects. Now, in this work, talking on the topic of looking for one’s identity in the contemporary society.
“I was traveling in search for people who have decided to escape from social life and lived all alone in the wild nature, far away from any villages, towns or other people. The major part of my trips were done in Russia.
I grew up in the heart of the big city, but I’ve always been drawn to wildlife – for me it’s a place where I can hide and feel the real me, my true self, out of social context.
I am concerned about the issue of internal freedom in the modern society: how feasible it is, when you’re surrounded by a social framework all the time? School, work, family – once in this cycle, you are a prisoner of your own position, and have to do what you’re supposed to. You should be pragmatic and strong, or become an outcast or a lunatic.
The main characters of my project violate social standards for different reasons. By a complete withdrawal from society they go live alone in the wild nature, gradually dissolving in it and losing their social identity. While exploring their experience, it is important for me to understand if one is able to break free from social dependence and get away from the public to the subjective – and thus, to make a step towards oneself.”
To view more of Danila’s work, please visit his website.