Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Foaie Verde

Foaie Verde (green leaf) is a visual journey through Transylvania. Originally commissioned by Opera North, the images have been developed into cinematic sequences and slideshows and combined with live music and recorded sound to create a visual and aural performance as well as forming a photo-essay on their own.
As Romania prepares to join the EU in 2007, these images capture a country on the cusp of change and yet still rooted in rural traditions. Peasant farmers travel to their fields by horse and cart, shepherds graze their flocks in the same pastures as their great-grandfathers and widows wear black to mourn the dead. Amongst these timeless images there are signs of modern life, signs that the forests, which once hid Transylvania from the rest of the world, are now more permeable to outside influences.
Nevertheless, the region is at little risk of loosing its identity within a homogenized Europe. The traditional music and songs of Transylvania have never been more vibrant. Folk music across Romania is a living genre, broadcast daily on two specialized TV channels and on scores of radio stations. These traditional songs, and in particular the Doinas of Transyvania, are a window on the soul of the region. By exploring the Doina's themes of love, loss and longing, Foaie Verde weaves a unique record of a place, a culture and a people.

By Dominick Tyler at Documentography

Documentography is a UK based collective of photographers dealing with documentary, reportage, journalism and fine art. The group develops personal as well as common projects tackling a wide range of social, political, and cultural issues.

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