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First lady by Aleksander Matofanov

edition 2020


Stanislaw Szuszkiewicz is the first chairman of the Supreme Council (the parliament of Independent Belarus), a professor of radio-physics. But something else interested me in Szuszkiewicz. In his modest three-room apartment, I found hundreds of photos that he took over the last 70 years. Thought it was material for a movie. He agreed.

Stanislaw Szuszkiewicz treats his passion with restraint. He never took part in contests, he did not seek fame and recognition, he just wanted to take pictures of people: acquaintances, friends, family. I noticed that portraits are his best. Especially the portraits of his wife, Iryna. It seems that Iryna willingly posed for her husband's camera. However, as it turned out later, long posing was exhausting her. Stanislaw searched long and patiently for the best background, perspective, and the right moment, which irritated Iryna. She recalls her husband's artistic hobby with a smile and a bit of irony. In her opinion, his best photos are taken by accident, it is more of a coincidence than his merit.

Browsing through the photos of Szuszkiewicz, I noticed the specific relationship between Stanislaw and Iryna. She is a scientist physicist, a graduate of the Faculty of Nuclear Physics, which was managed by her future husband. However, it turned out that in political matters Iryna speaks and behaves is the real First Lady.

Today Stanislaw Szuszkiewicz is 86 years old. He can no longer cope with some chores around the house. Stanislaw is more and more dependent on his wife, who is 20 years younger than him. Pictures of young Iryna allow him to come back to his memories.

Aliaksandr Matafonau

Born 27.10.1977, Borisov, Belarus


› 2020-2021 / "Solidarity with Belarus" initiative, the training program of film art at PWSFTviT
› 2019-2020 / Documentary Course DOK PRO - Wajda School
› 2002 / Directing and television courses in Saint Petersburg (Saint Petersburg State University of Film and Television)
› 2001-2002 / Belarusian College (journalism)
› 1999/ graduated from the Belarusian State University of Culture and Arts (major - dramaturgy)


› 2011-2020 / Cinematographer (live), director (Radio Svaboda, Minsk, Belarus)
› 1999-2011 / Writer, director (Belarusian Public Television, Minsk, Belarus) - created six original projects, over 200 programs and TV films on various topics


› 2019 / “Red Mountain”
› 2018 / "Ordinary Suicide"
› 2017-2019 / "Journey with Dmitry Bartosik" (Series of short stories)
› 2012 / "Diagnosis: Bismarck"