Mery Agakhanyan: Village Life in Armenia

Mery Agakhanyan, recipient of a Documentary Photography Project Production Grant, documented life in small villages throughout Armenia. Due to the absence of job opportunities, low wages, lack of social support, and the inability to farm their lands due to harvest losses, high interest rates on farm loans, or lack of agricultural equipment, many village residents have migrated to Russia to work as laborers and construction workers. Agakhanyan photographed portraits of those—often the elderly, women, and children—who are left behind, as well as domestic life and local customs and rituals, in order to capture not only the daily life, but also the unique mood and culture, of these villages.