/ Annemarija Gulbe / Photo story

The White Goat

A dormitory is not home, but a place, where to stay from Monday to Friday. Apparently, life away from home is considered as a sign of independence and growing up, or at least (or hopefully) striving for it. Yet, in dorms you must learn how to get on with your roommates and also with yourself. You must learn to be responsible, to disregard the lack of privacy and to become part of a commune.

I spent 4 years in the dormitory of young artists, musicians and people of culture in The White Goat. This series was made in the last year of the time I spent in the dormitory. Taking more and more images in the snapshot aesthetics of the 1990s analogue camera, I realized it was the right way how I want to depict this environment. The details of interior, situations and people sometimes give rise to a feeling that these images had been created earlier – in the previous decades.

I avoided this place and never wanted to be connected with it. A little bit reluctantly and trying to overcome my introvert nature, I tried to engage in the events. I documented the daily life, domestic part of it, the presence of my mates and the still lives, which somebody had intentionally or unintentionally created and left in one of the communal rooms. One of such rooms is called “the square” – a square shaped room in the middle of a hallway, where everything happens, but sometimes nothing happens. In this room one is able to isolate oneself from the roommates and to be on one’s own, at the same time revealing oneself more openly in public. This is the most public room here.

Annemarija Gulbe (1997) is studying photography at the ISSP School. She has also participated in the ISSP Summer School. She has just graduated from the Department of Apparel Design in Riga School of Design and Art and has been enrolled in the Department of Visual Communication at the Latvian Art Academy. She was also the finalist of the FK Prize this year.