Bakhayev’s artwork elicited an emotional response. Dozens of people around the globe sent him pictures of their relatives so he could “bring them to life” in his collages. “These photos show people in one of the most critical moments of their lives: they were photographed before entering a slaughterhouse. This is the doorway to hell. You look at these people and realize what their fate would be. This gives special energy to these photographs. This job takes a lot of mental energy from me, but I can’t stop doing it.”
Artist Brings Stalin's Victims Into Present Day
Khasan Bakhayev creates photo collages that merge the victims of Josef Stalin's Great Terror with contemporary subjects. He began posting his images online on October 27, three days before Ukraine observed the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Political Repressions. The first of his collages used a photograph of Tamara Litsinskaya, who was executed by a firing squad in 1937. Bakhayev says he wanted to emphasize that Stalin’s regime is not in the distant past, and that its victims were ordinary people, just like those who are alive today.