A journey into the works of BRENDAN FREEMAN
During my last trip to Russia with my friend and stylist Tess Yopp we visited Elista, the capital of Kalmykia republic in the south of Russia. Elista, a city of white stupas, saffron-colored prayer wheels, and golden Buddha statues, is poorly connected to the rest of Russia but it’s home to the largest Buddhist community in Europe and it has a really interesting mix of ethnicities which contributes to a very high and rich culture. People here despite of their lack of connections are very kind and welcoming and also closely connected to traditions. Formerly a land attractive to herdsmen for its fertility, the Kalmyk Steppe has become a region dry and extremely poor in natural resources due to intensive agricultural activity. Livestock raising, however, is still what a large amount of the population relies on to survive.