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The prayer against the fog of history

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Lesia Pcholka’s work delves into the intricate connection between mystical rituals and

political pressure within authoritarian regimes. She uses the 2020 Belarusian revolution as a

poignant example, examining the profound trauma it caused and the visual symbols that

accompanied it. In her video works her voice can be heard whispering an ancient spell

originally used by healers. That ultimately seeks to exorcize the trauma of political exile and

the impossibility of returning home.


The video’s ritual is juxtaposed with drone footage captured in the spring of 2023, unveiling

diverse regions of the country from a vantage point unattainable for the average Belarusian.

This bird’s-eye perspective offers an insightful comprehension of the boundaries that define

one’s »territory«. Bearing in mind that this prospect is no longer available , as drone

photography has been banned in Belarus since the summer of 2023. Lesia’s work

underscores the significance of self-identity and belonging to a community , emphasizing

that it extends beyond the notion of imagined communication, reaching a deeper and firmly

rooted connection than the one often arbitrarily drawn lines of the »nation-state.« The 2020

revolution played a pivotal role in envisioning individuals as an integral part of a larger

narrative. It flowed through the streets of different cities, manifesting a vision of the future

and branding itself with symbols that conveyed this vision.