On January 13th, 2016, Alliance française Toronto is proud to invite you to the vernissage of the photographer Zile Liepins' exhibition "No One Says Anything, Everyone Remembers Everything", at 6:30pm.
This documentary photo and text essay examines everyday life in the transitory political present of Latvia, a country emerging from the remnants of the Soviet Union and adapting to a new European identity, with one eye uneasily fixed on its Russian neighbour. Historically, Latvia has been a perpetually-occupied territory, but has since restored independence from the USSR in 1991, joined the European Union and NATO in 2004 and then the Eurozone in January 2014. This influence of opposing powers creates a layered and often conflicted national and cultural identity.
The title No One Says Anything, Everyone Remembers Everything expresses the way individuals in small Latvian communities silently and publicly face each other after privately reconciling trauma. Expanding this social occurrence to the entire country, the title refers to a larger and more difficult history of war, deportation, labour camps, separation, immigration and torture under the KGB. At the same time, the images emphasize the quiet rhythms of mundane activities, personal trials and ambiguous landscapes. Shot in Latvia over two years, the work functions as a coded visual language of cultural symbols and personal references that creates a rich portrait of a place and time.
Zile Liepins is a photographer and graphic artist. Her documentary work combines photography, text and design to tell stories that focus on everyday moments and details to reflect a larger narrative. She hold a MFA in Documentary Media from Ryerson University, earned a BA in Visual Studies and French from the University of Toronto and studied Applied Arts in Paris, France. In 2014, she was recognized with the SF Graduate Thesis Production Award in Documentary Media and selected for an AIMIA / AGO Photography Prize residency with shortlisted artist Elad Lassry. A different iteration of No One Says Anything, Everyone Remembers Everything was selected for a 2015 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival featured exhibition.