What an extraordinary surprise! On Saturday morning, I got a whatsapp message saying: “I am the Russian boy you are looking for!” I had suspicions it was going to happen as the night before Rosphoto magazine who had published the story of my quest to find told me they were almost 100% sure they had found the Russian boy. But I thought I would be the one to contact him.
When the message arrived, I couldn’t reply straight away. It had gone so fast since the day I had launched the search! Thanks a to friends – on social networks and in real life -, I got clues and understood the pictures were his first day at school and that it was in the late 80s because of a new type of class year introduced. Thanks to the car’s registration plate, a very good independent journalist, Victor Borisov, found the owner and even his address! It turned out it was the Russian boy’s uncle’s car! Victor even identified the place where it was parked and sent me a google street view of the place today.
Unbelievable… The car owner, Yakov, was also the photographer. I got in touch with him and Victor translated his reply to me: ” A long time ago…my father gave me a camera Elikon, trying to attract me to photojournalism (he was the director of the printing house), but I became a painter… The camera for a long time gathered dust on the shelf and my friend of art exhibition in Izmailovo took it. And as we can see, he sold it with a film inside, which I had forgotten about. Most of the photos show my nephew. This is the simple story of this Elikon camera”.
Simple but also magical. Dmitry told me he couldn’t sleep the night he found out about the existence of his photos! “Before, I didn’t believe in miracles. Now I do!”, he told me. We had a great two hours skype conversation on Monday night and got on very well, sharing the same idea about the magic of the story.
Well, the Russian media seem to share this point of you as a few Russian TV channels and papers have been in touch to tell what is to me a photography Christmas tale… with probably more episodes to come. To be certainly followed…