My name is Cory Mitchell and this is my first blog post! I found this photo in an online exhibit of artist Sergei Mikhailovich Produkin-Gorskii. Produkin-Gorski’s work is extraordinary because he was among the first to produce color photographs. The interesting bit is that not many people knew about his work because he did not make his photography or his methods widely known in Russia or the rest of the world.
The above photo is of prisoners of war from the Austro-Hungarian empire. This particular camp’s location is unknown but experts predict that it was located in the north part of the European side of Russia. The prisoners of war are most likely from groups of Poles, Ukrainians and other Eastern Europeans. Typically photos of this nature would be confiscated upon their creation due to the prevalence of censoring by the Russian government. It is believed that since it isn’t too clear in the photo that the people are prisoners of war, the government did not confiscate it.
This photo is interesting because at first glance it really does not look like a depiction of a POW camp. Upon closer examination, seeing the uniformed soldiers book-ending the group makes it a little more clear. I also found it interesting that the Russian government was keen on censorship back then as well as now. It makes me wonder what else they could have confiscated or hidden from the world back then.
This picture was the work of photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Produkin-Gorskii and the gallery was found at the library of congress’ page online. My date of access was 1 September 2013.
http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/empire/gorskii.html (Link to the gallery)
http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/empire/images/p87_2067__00279_.jpg (Link to the individual image).