In a former Rusyn village of Ruské, Snina region, a “photographic monument” is located. Photographs of Josef Lauruski, as well as photographs of the former inhabitants of the village were installed there. The exhibition was organized by Vihorlatské museum and Reflex Photoclub. Korzár Slovak daily informs about the event.
The village Ruské, as well as the other ones – Dara/Дара, Ostruzhnica/Остружніця, Zvala/Звала, Velyka Polana/Велика Поляна, Smolnik/Смолник and Staryna/Старина – were resettled in the 1980s and officially vanished from the world map. People had to leave their property, as the Starina/Старима reservoir was built to secure drinking water for the Východné Slovensko (Eastern Slovakia) region. Nevertheless, people did not forget about their home villages, the places connected with their ancestors. The generations have been meeting for almost thirty years to make constant recollections about their roots.
From the very beginning (i.e. resettlement), changes in the country were documented by photographers and filmmakers. The effect of the cooperation of the Ruské village authorities, the center in Snina and the Reflex Photoclub, an idea of the open-air “photographic exhibition” arose.
“The monument is dedicated not only to the people of Pljasha/Пляшa, the highest point in Ruské, but also to the tourists, the lovers of a country rich in nature’s beauty” – says Maria Mishova from the Vihorlatské Museum.
The idea of the monument became a reality on 18 September 2016. Forty photographs were put on the building’s facade and inside. They present the village’s story in photographs. The story of the land, as well as the people is told through the piece. Most of the photographs present one of the village’s inhabitants – the photographer Josef Lauruski.
The exhibition was opened on the day of a Kermesh at Ruské village from the times when the church of Nativity of Mary functioned. The celebration was attended by the Archbishop Rostislav of Prešov (Orthodox Church), Metropolitan of the Czech Lands and Slovakia. He built a new chapel in the place of the former Orthodox church.
As Maria Mishova said, the exhibition is only the beginning. The activities will develop.
In the photograph: Ruské village before resettlement. Source: www.regionalnedejiny.sk.