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Since Pripyat was quickly abandoned, many of the residents’ personal items can still be found strewn about.
For Postalovsky, the children’s dolls, left here for 29 years, are the most poignant reminders of lives uprooted, damaged, and lost.
Many of the dolls can be found in the city’s kindergarten classrooms. These classrooms, with their desks, small beds, and other children’s items, are a favorite subject of many photographers.
Postalovsky, in his descriptions, finds the dolls to be almost like looking into the faces of the children who loved them.
Postalovsky photographs the dolls as he finds them, without moving them from the places they’ve been lying for nearly 30 years.
Their positions, their open or closed eyes, and their varying states of decay give each one a unique expression.
It’s as if each reacted differently to their fate. Some, we can imagine, have a look of desperation. Others look expectant, as though they’re waiting for a child to pick them up again.
Still others look like they’ve accepted their fate and are quietly degrading back into the earth.