Photo project

White Lie: How a Photographer Wanted to Draw Attention to Animal Testing

To advocate for the rights of wild animals, Moscow photographer Maria Ionova-Gribina created a fake project: she took photographs where she implied that the animals were subjected to tests in one of the labs of the Pushchino Scientific Center near Moscow. Her project won the blitz-contest of the Russian Young Photographers 2016 festival, but was later disqualified due to the fact that its description did not correspond the reality.
Maria Ionova-Gribina Age 35

Born and lives in Moscow. Graduated from art college and the professional course at the Moscow Academy of Photography. Worked for the Grinberg Agency between 2011 and 2013. Participated in contemporary art and photography exhibitions, her works are in private collections in Russia and other countries. Member of the Russian Union of Art Photographers. Currently is working on personal projects. Designed a course for the Moscow School of Visual Arts.

— ‘Life’ is a fake project.

All the images and situations described in the project are artificial and do not reflect any real locations or events. I deliberately used real names of the public institutions of Pushchino to make the project more believable and draw the attention of the viewers to the issue.

I created this project to advocate for the rights of wild animals. According to the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection (BUAV) and the Nuffield Council on Bioethics, more than 100 million animals are used for lab tests annually around the world. More than half of them are bred specifically for the tests, the others are captured from the wild. Most animals only participate in one experiment, which can last between several minutes to several years, and they either die during the experiment or are euthanized after.

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