Victor GALUSKA, Moldova
PROJECT: Laying the first bricks for the Zaharia Foundation for Documentary Photography Research

Moved by creativity and utmost patriotism, Victor is a Documentary Filmmaker at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty in Moldova.

In his capacity as a documentary filmmaker, he is creating short reportages from around the country. Previously, he worked as a freelancer  and created short films.

Victor studied Film Production at the Academy of Music, Theatre and Fine Arts (AMTAP) in Chisinau, Moldova. After graduating from the University, he discovered the collection of negatives and decided to launch creative projects to make Zaharia Cusnir’s house an artistic hub.

“My life changed since I discovered thousands of photo negatives in the old house of an abandoned Moldovan village in 2016. This discovery gave me a reason to stay in my home country while all my family members and friends gave it up for a better life abroad. I could not ignore these archives, since they represent our past, our history deserving to be put on display for larger national and international audiences. The EaP Fellowship helped me to pursue my aspirations and preserve unique historical materials. Additionally, I gained invaluable professional and personal skills, including project management and public speaking. My journey of promoting Zaharia’s art revitalized his home village and the memory of its inhabitants. It took me four years of research to realize what was the real value of Zaharia’s photography: it reflected our national integrity and dignity that we used to have in my country. Accordingly, ZAHARIA PROJECT was my personal attempt to answer the following question: Is leaving the only choice one can make in Moldova today?” – Victor GALUSKA

Laying the first bricks for the Zaharia Foundation for Documentary Photography Research

This action was a follow-up initiative of the creative project: Zaharia’s World: Restoration and Digitalization of the Zaharia Cusnir Photography Archive previously implemented by Nadejda Cervinscaia, EaP Fellow 2017. To promote the heritage of Zaharia Cusnir – the Moldovan photographer and film-maker, Victor formally established a non-profit organization –  Pod to proceed with the further projects linked to Zaharia’s creative materials.  Also, the action aimed to digitalize the full photo archive and launched it from the very early stage. Following this, Victor created a website and professional social media channels (Facebook, Instagram, etc.) to present the digitized photographs. Even two years after the project, the Archives are still in the spotlight and attract world-renowned magazines and media.

The action raised the visibility of the Moldovan non-material heritage from the ’50s-’60s and produced 3,751 high-quality digitized negative photos from Zaharia Cusnir’s archive. Additionally, Victor established a Non-governmental organization – Pod; the organization revives Zaharia’s World as it has already delivered a documentary film about the photographer. Other tangible deliverables of the project are the website and the social media pages, including Facebook hitting 2,000 likes in 6 months after it was first launched. The website and social media channels enable the local and international public to return to history and enjoy the Moldovan ethnocultural identity. Through the restoration, digitalization and dissemination of the archive, both projects provided access to knowledge and cultural heritage of Soviet Moldova which has never been disclosed before.

Fellowship Programs 2019
Country Moldova
Areas of Interest Awareness raising
Topics Culture & Art
Project duration May 2019 - November 2019