Life in the Shadow of Invasion: Lesha Berezovskiy’s Photographs of Ukraine

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All Images © Lesha BerezovskiyAll Images © Lesha Berezovskiy

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The young photographer Lesha Berezovskiy lives together with his wife Agata in Kyiv. When they woke up on February 24, 2022, they suddenly faced a new reality: the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine. How do Lesha’s friends and neighbors, residents of Kyiv and Ukraine, cope with this abrupt break from their “normal” daily lives?

What happens to people when their own fate is suddenly determined by world politics? In photographs and notes, Lesha has been recording his thoughts for the Swiss online magazine “” since February 2022. Unfiltered, direct, and honest, he describes initial feelings of being overwhelmed, the solidarity of the people on the ground, a cautiously hopeful summer, everyday life in the fall accompanied again by the wailing of sirens, and the first cold and dark winter under Russian attack.

The images and texts in his book, We Stay, published by Sturm & Drang, document Lesha’s impressions from this past year – moments, situations and events – told from a very personal perspective. They’re touching, disturbing, poetic and yet always very direct and true to life.

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