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Eleonore de montesquiou
Experimental doc. | hdv | black and white | 29'39'' | France / Russia | 2017
OLGA&OLGA are two strong soviet women discussing their struggles through life, with men, themselves and their political environment. Emancipated in the marxist sense, they don’t need men to survive, but does feminism mean anything more for them than a fairy tale? is the recurrent question that I have been asking Olga and Olga for almost ten years. Both Olgas live on the Estonian-Russian border. Olga Afanasyeva was born in Tver, she studied in Moscow before being displaced to a factory in Ivangorod in the 70s. Olga Tüvi was born in Narva, now Estonia, and worked as a metallurgist in a factory in Ivangorod. She has an Estonian passport and family, but she speaks only Russian. In the nineties, they both lost their jobs, since factories were remodeled or closed down all over the ex-Soviet Union. Today, the pensions that they receive in Russia allows them to live with a few Euros a day, to make ends meet, Olga Afanasyeva sells socks and stockings in the Ivangorod market, Olga Tüvi is an elevator repair woman in panel housings in Ivangorod and they both smuggle things daily across the Estonian border. The men have disappeared from their lives and we can discuss it all freely.
French-Estonian, born 1970 in Paris, lives in Tallinn and Berlin. Eleonore de Montesquiou's work revolves around the articulation between private and official histories, personal and national identities. It tackles the intricacies and ambiguities of living in the margins, based on her personal experience of up rootedness. Eléonore primarily working with video, she tapes testimonies, creating prosthetic memories of repressed histories. In her documentary-informed works, her camera becomes the voice of these voiceless people. Her work is based on a documentary approach, translated in films, drawings and texts; it deals mainly with issues of integration/immigration/meaning of a nation in Estonia, giving voice to the Russian community. A few years, she started working with asylum seekers from French speaking countries in Estonia.