My name is Igor Baranchuk. I was born and raised in Moscow. For quite a long time I was engaged in drawing and painting, but the quality of my work did not satisfy me. I was very clear about my level and was very constrained. At some point, I came across a catalog of one Leningrad photographer and his works interested me greatly. Such a romantic impression. It should be noted that photography was always somewhere nearby, but I did not see any potential for me in it. But when I saw that catalog, I thought I could also photograph something. And probably photograph better. And so it turned out.
In winter, I take photos indoors. When it gets warmer, I go outside. The sun is shining. But I can confuse the seasons.
I could often hear “we know that Baranchuk usually photographs some trash”. Before, it annoyed me. Now I think, why not? Nothing happened until I took a picture.
Mismatch of expectations with the result obtained. In fact, I am not interested in street photography, as such in the majority of cases. I’m interested in what the author tells me. And not in a bunch of some tricks that don’t have any message. Usually you hear something like “I bought a camera and I go around the city with it” and what? No use at all. Last year, I released the book “Handjob“, which is the result of my shooting in the 2010s and one of my longest-running projects. Stepan Lipatov worked on the conceptual design of the book and I am very grateful to him. It was a truly collaborative effort to systematize the archive and make its possible presentation and representation. Formally, the book is devoted to the club life of Moscow. But this is only a surface that you can catch on to. In many ways, this book is a reflection on the crisis of modern documentary photography, its narrative and aesthetics.
I value autonomy very much, and photography gives it to me. As the poet said: poetry is the best school of uncertainty. In many ways, this also applies to photography, such an expansion of the space of struggle, which helps to fight internal demons with the help of external ones. And whether it helps is also a big question. Of course, photography is the most democratic kind of sport, but do not forget that it imposes a great degree of responsibility on your activity, namely, answering the questions: what?, where?, when?