Department of National History Museum of Latvia Dauderi offers to the visitors a foreigner’s perspective of the Latvian culture and its roots. The exhibition “Man and Nature in Latvia” is featuring b/w images of the Italian documentary photographer Luca Berti of the four Latvian historical regions.
“Due to the radical changes of way of living and needs of the modern society, the rural communities are experiencing a serious crisis of survival: an ageing population, unemployment, emigration of young people, with a consequent loss of local identity of the remaining population. The dramatic abandon of the land in favour of the city has brought the ancient harmony of the relation between Man and Nature to a breaking point,” tells the artist.
“As a professional documentary photographer I find it extremely motivating as well as an important task to document the condition of the rural societies still living today. “Man and Nature in Latvia” is part of a larger project which intends to document the rural cultures of the 21. Century in the Scandinavian, Baltic and East European Countries. “Man and Nature in Latvia” aims to show the beauty of the Latvian landscape and to preserve its memory through the photo documentation of what is remaining of the Latvian rural culture today.”
As the focus of the project the photographer has chosen the landscape, on its ancient villages, with typical wooden houses, as well as old churches and farms. Author explains that “for centuries they have characterised the physical aspect and the social life of the country, symbolising the harmonious relation between Man and Nature in Latvia. A tight relation, where the two parts mutually influence each other.” This project is made in collaboration with The Ethnographic Open-Air Museum of Latvia.
Luca Berti was born in Florence, Italy, in 1978. Lives and works in Copenhagen, Denmark. For his photo projects is collaborating with national and regional museums of cultural history in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Estonia.
Initiator and curator of the exhibition – Līga Gaile.
The photographer would like to express his gratitude to Vita Dreijere, Vivita Ločmele and Mārcis Ločmelis & family, Andris Koks, Una Sedleniece, Raimonds Tiguls, Zane Zālīte, Ieva Zilvere, Salacgriva Museum, Maira Dudareva, The Latvian Photo Museum of Photography, Kuldiga Museum, Krista Jansone, Guna Millersone, Talsi Museum.
The exhibition will be on display till May 21.