Germany / Finland
The Border Zone
The Border Zone is a photo essay about the Russian border in Northern Europe. It shows historical places and how people live there today.
The Red Army invaded Finland in November 1939, and a few months later, in April 1940, the Germans invaded Norway. During the Winter War, Finland defended itself and negotiated an armistice. Then, in World War II in 1941, they fought with the Germans against the Soviet Union. After the Germans lost the war and the Red Army liberated Norway, Finland had to cede territory to the Soviet Union.
These events changed the course of history. While Norway was a founding member of NATO, Finland tried to remain neutral. This ended with Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine and its entry into NATO.
People living along the Russian border have come to terms with their large neighbor. Sometimes it is shoals of fish migrating between Russian and Norwegian waters or bears coming out of hibernation. Most of all, it is the people and friendships that have developed since the fall of the Soviet Union and the economic cooperation that is essential for survival in the sparsely populated regions of the Far North. All of this has already been put on hold or is in danger of collapsing. Patrick Junker and Jonathan Terlinden traveled through Finland and Norway looking for small stories to understand the big picture better.
Patrick Junker (1991) is a freelance photojournalist based in Berlin, Germany. He works for The New York Times, STERN, CNN International, DER SPIEGEL, DIE ZEIT, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and GEO Wissen. His work has been published in The Guardian, Society Magazine, A-magasinet, Süddeutsche Zeitung, and DUMMY. His work has won the Grimme Online Award, the Hansel-Mieth Award, and the German Society for Photography’s Award for Science Photography. Patrick has an MA from the University of Applied Sciences in Dortmund, Germany, and a BA in Photojournalism and Documentary Photography from the Hanover University of Applied Sciences and Arts. With his projects, he wants to move people and create an understanding of sensitive topics.
Jonathan Terlinden (1996) lives and works in Helsinki, Finland. His work was included in the group exhibition Summer of ’21 at Berlin Photo Week 2021 and published in Findrangers magazine. He is a member of Värinä Cooperative (darkroom collective), Suomen Pimiötaiteilijat (darkroom artists in Finland), and the Künstlerhaus in Stuttgart. The son of a German and a Finnish-Swedish mother, he has lived intermittently in Germany since the age of seventeen. He belongs to the Finnish-Swedish minority in Finland and has a special perspective on his own country.