The Place Where I am Not is a personal documentary project exploring the dramatic changes that took place in my home country over the past three years.
After joining the EU in 2004, Latvia had the fastest growing economy in Europe. However, heavily hit by recession in 2008, the country now is only leading the charge with one of the highest rates of unemployment in the area.
The shift left a dramatic imprint on every sphere of life, with major institutions facing closure, hospitals and schools undergoing fundamental restructuring, thousands of people are left with no steady source of income and no certainty for what the following day may bring. My work is a document of different responses to the situation Latvians found themselves in.
On a more personal level, I explore the issues of migration and cultural identity, challenging the notion of the word “home“. Telling the story from perspective of a young European who left the country of her origins in search for a better life overseas, I am not fully an outsider, nor insider. Instead of documenting the town that used to be my home, I capture the experience of returning to the place where I no longer am.
I am a Latvian-born, London-based documentary storyteller and visual artist. With an academic background in photography, journalism and media, I work across a wide range of creative platforms, choosing the most suitable mediums to tell the story. Most of my work is centered around the social issues in Eastern Europe and former USSR, as I reflect on her own experience of growing up in the post-Soviet Latvia, divided in between the memories of the Eastern past and illusions about the Western future.