Stuning Photos Of A Children’s Military Boarding School In The Ukraine
In this series, Israeli photographer Michal Chelbin tells the darkyl poetic tale of kids growing up in a Ukrainian military boarding school. The photos are quiet and eerily beautiful, revealing a reality of heightened gender roles and curriculum fashioned “in the service of forming a new governing military elite.”
In the past, these types of boarding schools were considered to be something like an asylum for troubled kids. These days, the schools function as respectable schools for middle-class children. Still, though the schools have been normalized, these schools aren’t quite normal. These are institutes for military training, made bizarre by the fact that the children are so young.
The images of this ex-Soviet world are eerie: young girls link arms in wedding dresses, boys hold guns twice their size, and a student stands in the quadrangle with a gas mask and full protective gear.
But according to the photographer, there was nothing particularly abnormal about the students. Like teens everywhere, they complained about school because it is school. Even in such a specific place, life goes on as normal.