Fatal attraction: step inside the Lithuanian bunker where you can relive Soviet terrors
British photographer Barry Falk has travelled across Lithuania exploring traces of collective amnesia and trauma. The journey has taken him from various memorial sites into the country’s forests, the site of countless wartime atrocities. Yet an ex-Soviet bunker outside of Nemenčinė offers a different experience of the past. Built between 1983 and 1985 as a telecommunications centre during the Soviet occupation of Lithuania, the bunker has now been repurposed as a “live history” attraction where actors dressed as KGB guards are hired to terrify the audience. “The purpose of the re-enactment is educational: colleges send students to learn from the experience; businesses also send employees here for recreation,” the photographer learned on his visit to the bunker last autumn. Falk documents the bunker's interiors which have been decorated with Soviet paraphernalia collected from local markets. As Falk describes it: “The effect is eerie: the uncanny reality of the Soviet regime enhanced by the mould growing on the furniture and the sense of being lost in an absurd system.”
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