Rex In Peace is an ongoing photo project about the culture of animal burial around the world.
I am trying to analyse the human-animal connection through my documented pictures. This project started in my hometown Vilnius, Lithuania. There are a couple of places where people bury their beloved pet companions. One of them is legal – an empty field just outside the city, and the other one is illegal – a surrealist place just under the TV tower, surrounded by a soviet architectural landscape, where people bury their pets, though it is not allowed.
While documenting the tombstones I was amazed by the aesthetics and emotional aftertaste of this phenomenon and began to do research in this field. The human-animal connection is universal despite cultural, social or any other differences and I am working on portraying that.
So far I’ve documented cemeteries in Vilnius, Riga, Minsk, Moscow, New York and Las Vegas. I am exploring cultural attitudes towards animals in different environments by documenting and doing detailed research on the pet burial places, both official and unofficial. I was amazed by the versatility and uniqueness of this phenomenon. It never occurred to me that cemeteries from different continents can be more similar to each other than the cemeteries that are only separated by 2 hours’ drive and my goal is to reflect that in this project.
Project website: https://astaost.wixsite.com/rexinpeace