Photographer Sorin Vidis has captured a series of portrait photos entitled “The last people of the pit”, documenting the lives of people living in extreme poverty in an abandoned area near Bucharest, Romania.
What used to be a beautiful area with houses, gardens, and a monastery built back in the 17th century, has turned into a pit that does not appear very welcoming nowadays.
Nevertheless, the Vacaresti pit is home to three families living in extreme poverty. It is located near Romania’s capital city, Bucharest, and photographer Sorin Vidis has visited the place several times in order to document the lives of “The last people of the pit” through photography.
Romanian photographer Sorin Vidis documents the lives of “The last people of the pit”
At the beginning of the 1980s, Romanian dictator Nicolae Ceausescu decided to topple the entire Vacaresti community, which consisted of an area of about 200 hectare / 2 square kilometers.
The Ceausescu regime has demolished a 17th century monastery as well as the houses and gardens built by the people in order to build an artificial lake.
The lake has never materialized as the works have been suspended in 1988. One year later, the Ceausescu regime has fallen, while the construction has never resumed.
Roughly 15 years ago, multiple families have started building shacks in this area, which now offers “delta-like particularities”, because they did not have anywhere else to go.
Living in extreme poverty is not something that you hope for your future, so the younger generation has started moving to other places which provide more chances of “escaping” hardship.
Only three families have remained in the Vacaresti pit, so the photographer has decided to name his documentary project as “The last people of the pit”.
The last people of the pit will soon have to find shelter somewhere else
Currently, there is a dispute between the authorities and owners of the land. Since their homes have been demolished and their properties taken away by the Ceausescu regime, the owners feel like they have every right to get their land back.
The authorities are still refusing to return the land to the former owners, although it seems like a consensus will be reached sometime in the near future. However, nobody is wondering what will happen to the families still living there.
As stated above, they are looking for a way out, but without any help from the authorities, it will be very hard for them to find better shelter.
Regardless of the future, Sorin Vidis has decided to capture the life of this small community on film in order to preserve its legacy. Hopefully, this will also raise the awareness of local authorities and do something to help “The last people of the pit”.
These outstanding shots have been captured with a film camera. More information can be found at the photographer’s official Cargo Collective page.