Donald Weber

Canada

Interrogations

Interrogations is about a place where justice, mercy, hope and despair are manufactured, bought, bartered and sold; a sound-proofed factory where truth is both the final product and the one thing that never leaves the room.

From 2005 to 2012, I travelled through Russia and Ukraine photographing the physical and emotional ruins of the unstoppable storm we call history. Meeting and living with ordinary people who had survived much—from wars and conflict, to the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, to the fall of the Soviet Union—I began to see the modern state as a primitive, bloody, and sacrificial rite of unnamed and unchecked power.

This project is the result of a personal quest to uncover the hidden meaning of the bloody 20th century, as displayed through private encounters with state power. With each image, I was looking to make a very simple photograph of an actual police interrogation, yet a complex portrait of the relationship between truth and power.

For truth in this context is a complicit act, a mutual recognition—however fleeting—between those who hold, and those who must surrender to power. This work interrogates the interrogators.