There is one place in St. Petersburg without police, a thin strip of land connected to the mainland via a tunnel, Kanonersky Island. The island, where the soil contains a whole bouquet of heavy metals, where the central aeration sewage treatment plant is located, where a motorway stretches over the heads of the few inhabitants, is the safest place to express your civic position.
We came there in March 2019 for two hours to publicly express everything that we wanted to say to the Russian government without getting arrested for it. Everyone wrote different statements which were important to them. This protest remained invisible to the public, journalists, and police and did not bring political changes. But for some of us it was an important shift - for these two hours we did not have fear. Fear that accumulates and reproduces over many years, that is passed on from generation to generation, a fear that is with you every minute. Fear of your own homeland.
Since 2016, the political situation in Russia has become entirely repressive. People protesting against state politics are met only with police brutality and with arrests. One person in this picture was arrested for 10 days for taking a part in a peaceful rally on 31 January 2021.
I have invited people from Russia to take part in an online rally, where they can write any statement they want to without getting arrested for their opinion. Spect_aсtors were welcome to join the protest by sending a one sentence statement via the Telegram channel. It appeared after a while on one of the monitors held by the people in the picture.