Fifth wave is project comprised of environmental portraits Russian LGBT immigrants who fled Russia for political and social freedom after 2012, when Vladimir Putin reclaimed power. Unlike some other recent upsurges of immigration, these Russian immigrants represent a new type of emigrant who have fled their homeland in search of political and social freedom: young, educated, and with no post-Soviet nostalgia.
The project also covers stories of LGBT immigrants who escaped discrimination, stigmatization, and life-threatening conditions.
According to a report from the Atlantic Council, 1.6 to 2 million Russians have left for the western democracies since Vladimir Putin’s ascent to the presidency. In that time, the Russian parliament introduced new proposals to accelerate the crackdown on the LGBT community by providing the authority to terminate the parental rights of individuals raising children with same-sex partners. And just last year, a new wave of gay persecution marked by detainment, harassment, and murder began in Chechnya.
This work gives participants a chance to talk openly about what remained for many years hidden.