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Battles for the Truth on the Nemtsov Bridge
August 10, 2015 14:34

About the Guards of the Nemtsov Bridge (by Lena Hades)

This is a list of people that are on duty on the Nemtsov bridge – Nadir Fatov, Liubov Sergeeva, Grigory Saksonov, Slava Geroeev, Andrey Margulev, Serguey Netrebsky, Daria Goriunova, Michail Kirtser, Lena Hades, Pavel Kolesnikov, Oleg Elanchik, Tania Tikhonovich, Sasha Korotkova, Dmitry Arsentiev, Vladimir Ionov, Olga Lekhtonen, Vadim Tsvetkov, Irina Rusanova, Viktor Kogan, Karine Kovhaeva, Andrey Darklight, Igor Gordeev, Serguey Kireev, Viktor Kapitonov, Aleksandr Frolov, Ekaterina Epryntseva, Pavel Sheshulkin, Yulia Schelkanova, Elena Zenina, Marina Lukyanets, Svetlana Novoselova, Marina Natapova, Oleg Voroshilin, Inna Kholodtsova, Boris Kazadaev…

They seem like kamikaze to me, they are NOT going to stop guarding the memorial, despite all the fierce attack on it! You understand that if such a world famous man was killed so impertinently, and the exterior surveillance cameras on the Kremlin wall all suddenly broke down, what can we then expect from our chimeras of the law and justice, if one of the volunteer-guardsmen will get hurt - the chimeras will get away with it once again…

About the volunteers on the Bridge I can say one thing - they are naive idealists, who believe in the human mind, and the meaning of human existence, and in some higher powers, that will save them while standing on the edge of the abyss... from falling into it...

Volunteering at the Nemtsov Bridge is to stand on the edge of the abyss!

For the truth the volunteers guard the Nemtsov-Grand Moscvoretsky Bridge. They guard not just the flowers, portraits, poems and placards from vandalism, theft and desecration, but also the small piece of land in asphalt and granite where the truth prevails in spite of tsunami of stupidity and obscurantism.

On this piece of Russian land Boris Nemtsov was murdered. For five long months this sacred span of asphalt is guarded by a small group of volunteers - just 40 people. 

Among them are actors, poets, doctors, teachers, engineers, artists, programmers, some of them are already retired, others are younger than 25 years old. They all share one motive: not to allow the ones in power, to erase the memory about the murdered politician. 

There were numerous attempts to destroy the memorial in past 165 days, there were multiple raids by the members if the SERB radical organisation, when flowers, placards, posters, photographs, candles and baskets of flowers, brought by supporters and followers of Nemtsov, were simply dumped into lorries and taken in an unknown direction, and the ongoing struggle with the Gormost (the city corporation that maintains the bridges).  I remember when one April evening the employee of Gormost stood on the bridge with a large black bag where he collected all the flowers brought to the memorial. Once I had to stand and personally rescue the bouquets. It was raining, strong wind was blowing around, and as always there was a Gormost man with a trash bag… I did not allow the bouquets to lie on the pavement, and so they would not end up in the trash I collected them. When the bouquets accumulated a mountain (because endless crowds of people brought and brought them), suddenly the other volunteers appeared. Gormost employees retreaded and we laid out a huge sign "!" ("FIGHT!") made of flowers. 

That's what happened during one of the night duties, when the bridge was guarded by volunteers Igor Gordeev, Pavel Kolesnikov and Liubov Sergeeva. Back then Gormost used to clean the pavement every night using sand blasting machines and chemicals. At midnight as usual, such machine appeared with a team of Gormost employees. Their supervisor told the volunteers that they interfere with cleaning of the bridge from dirt. 

After that a group of man in black camouflage came up the stairs towards them. They surrounded Kolesnikov and Gordeev and began to push Sergeeva away from the flowers and portraits, which she bravely defended. In order to somehow suspend the lawlessness, Liubov she pulled out her camera and started recording, but the brave man in black tripped her up, she fell, the camera instantly flee away from her hands, and the shooting of the offenders was interrupted. She later tried to find her camera in the bridge, but never did! Unfortunately this attack was not suppressed: the memorial was completely destroyed, the bridge was denuded, the flowers and portraits were taken away as ordinary trash.

But the next day the people's memorial was fully restored. Just like a phoenix it is being reborn again and again. 

What awaits the people's memorial in the future? How long will it last? How still and strong will be it's defenders?  There are no answers to these questions. Guarding the memorial and the bridge every day for long five months is s very difficult task, because one cannot move away from it, not for a minute, not for a second.  It's just like standing in the Guard of Honour day and night, and like Shiva, the many handed God, manage to do hundreds of things at once: keep order, change the flower water, answer the questions of the ones passing by, speak to the supporters if Boris Nemtsov, who came to the bridge with flowers, prevent vandalism or demonstrative disrespect to the murder site...Such a long standing and confrontation, think about it, lasts for 160 days already! That is an unprecedented case in the world history! A handful if independent volunteers, without any support from the outside, guards someone's memorial - in rain, snow, wind, cold, heat, hurricane, in any weather while suppressing the attacks if the pseudo-patriots listening to their insults and accusations incorruption and working for the US Department of State, often risking their own health and even life for the sake of...truth and victory of the common sense, for the peaceful future of Russia.  

(the article by Lena Hades "What happens on the Bridge" was translated into English by Michael A Korobkov) 

About the Art marathon in memory of Boris Nemtsov (by Lena Hades)

5 days before the murder, February 22, 2015 I finished a new diptych from the series "Thus spoke Zarathustra". The diptych was called "Man is the cruelest animal. At tragedies, bullfights and crucifixions, he has felt best on earth and when he invented hell for himself that was his very heaven." The second part of the diptych portrays a killed Minotaur in a sea of blood.

That day I posted the picture on Facebook and late night users of the social network, learning about the murder of Boris Nemtsov at the walls of the Kremlin, almost unanimously exclaimed that the picture looks prophetic and the Minotaur picture on in his power and strength was remarkably similar to Nemtsov shot dead. The second strange coincidence that the emblem of the party PARNAS (Party of the people's freedom), created by Nemtsov, is a bull. 

On March 3, the day of the funeral of a politician, I have decided to start an indefinite art marathon. 

Every day I create a new graphic portrait of Nemtsov, and new works from the series "Thus spoke Zarathustra", where Nemtsov speaks on behalf of the prophet Zarathustra. The number of portraits is growing every day – most of the portraits were located at the People's Memorial dedicated to Nemtsov, and some of the portraits became it's "face".

The Memorial has been attacked multiple times by Pro-Kremlin activists, during the attacks they beat the volunteers, destroyed flowers, tore portraits, threw the candles and Russian flags into garbage cans. July 23, during the next attack along with flowers, flags and photos 3 large graphic portrait of Nemtsov were stolen, I wrote a statement to the police about the theft of my works, estimating the damage in 9000$. Despite the fact that the attackers were immediately arrested, the police let them go. As always happens!

 Texts and photos are provided to Russia-IC by Lena Hades.


Author: Anna Dorozhkina

Tags: Boris Nemtsov     

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