We used to live in the Tundra
The Saami — the last indigenous people of Europe divided between Finland, Sweden, Norway and Russia — lost their autonomy on Russian territory with the arrival of Soviet power in the 1920s. This people, who lived mainly from reindeer herding in the tundra, were forced to live in apartment buildings. Children of nature, the Saami were depressed at the thought of losing their ancestral rhythms and being penned up. Gathered in the main Saami village - Lovozero, located on the Kola Peninsula in the hinterland of Murmansk city, was considered as a reserve. Settled to work in kolkhozes, they no longer had the right to be Saami: the practice of the language and the wearing of traditional costume were prohibited. Today, some 1,500 people still live on the Kola Peninsula, but only 200 speak the Saami language and these are mostly elderly people. Proud of their intangible traditions, these people strive to preserve their ancestral practices while adapting to modernity and global warming in the Arctic region.
Natalya Saprunova, born in Murmansk in Russia, she is a documentary photographer based in Paris. First worked as a French teacher and a photojournaliste for a daily newspaper in Murmansk, then she studied the documentary photojournalisme in Paris. Natalya now teaches photography at Graine de Photographe school in Paris and does documentary reportages. Her topics are the transformation of societies, environment, identity, youth, spirituality and femininity. Natalya is a member of the french photo agency, Zeppelin.
Artists in the same place