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Raffaele Petralla | Roma, Russian Federation

Organization: Prospekt

The monument of the space port erected at the train station. This railway junction is also crucial for the transport of rocket manufacturing components launched by the Cosmodrome. It is located 4km from the town, 800km from Moscow and about 200km from the capital of Arkhangelsk region.

Restricted military area of Mezen. 300 km from Arkhangelsk and few kilometers from Polar Circle. 

In this hostile territory, where environmental and climatic factors make everyday life hard and strenuous, computing errors in the trajectories of satellites from Plesetsk’s Cosmodrome become an unexpected resource. About 1500 km North of the launch base, between forests and tundra, there is a populated area of about ten villages. 

Inhabitants of this area, who base their own survival on hunting and fishing, are used to build daily life objects - mostly sledges and boats called “raketa”-  with the collected fragments of space rockets. They even make illegal business of the internal components as gold and titanium. 

I am a documentary photographer based in Rome, represented by Prospekt Agency and founding member of the Ulixes Picture collective. 
I am mainly focused on social, environmental and anthropological issues. 
My personal works have been published on many magazines such as National Geographic, GEO Magazin, New York Times, L’Espresso, The Washington Post, The New Yorker, Days Japan, Bloomberg Businessweek, Internazionale, D-La Repubblica weekly magazine, Terra Mater, CNN photos, La Repubblica, VICE, Der Spiegel, CNN, De Morgen, Taz Tageszeitung, NZZ Am Sontag, Business Insider, Corriere Della Sera, Jyllands Polsten, P3-Publico, GQ and many others. 
Currently I am working on a new project in extreme north of Russia about recycling of space rockets.



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