Between 1998 and 2005, the Norwegian photographer Jonas Bendiksen traveled through the fringes of the former Soviet empire, exploring the oblique stories of half-forgotten enclaves and restless territories. In the words of Jonas,

Many of these places are quaintly obscure but as I came to discover, they offer stark proof that the breakup of the Soviet Union is still a work in progress.

This picture was taken in the Altai Territory in 2000. Villagers were collecting scraps from a crashed spacecraft surrounded by white butterflies. Collection of satellite and spacecraft debris is a source of income, in this shattered lands. Jonas Bendiksen has been exploring this fractured landscape, witnessing the fascinating and the surreal. In the book “Satellites“, Jonas presented  a lyrical but unsentimental collection of photographs, exploring the little-known worlds of Transdniester, Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh, the Ferghana Valley, the Jewish Autonomous Region, and the spaceship crash zones near the Kazakh Steppe. Here are some images from this last section of the book.

These pictures are property of Jonas Bendiksen © Magnum Photos

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