/ Olya Ivanova / Photo story

The Village Day

The 8th July is the Village Day in Kichuga, a small village in Northern Russia. If you came here on that day, you would meet a lot of women on the streets – they are preparing for celebrating and dancing tonight. They have put on their best dresses and a bright make-up; they try to look modern and sexy. But there are no men on the fest. Some are already drunk, others are too old. It’s a problem of the entire Russia. Everybody told me that’s because of the World War II, when a lot of men were killed. Since then men have been listed as “endangered species”. Women took care of their sons, who grew up in families without a father. As a result we have raised a society of strong women and weak men. I shot portraits of women in the village fest; to me they seem strong and beautiful, true, sincere and open-hearted.

Olya Ivanova (1981, Moscow) works with Monocle, The Guardian Weekend, The Financial Times, The Daily Telegraph, Psychologies, Russian Reporter and Bloomberg Business Week. Her work has been exhibited in Russia, France, Italy, Thailand and USA.