A Photo Story of Mongolian Festivals

Ever since the fall of socialism in 1990s Mongolia, the country has been trying to fashion a national identity based on historical symbols and traditions, rather than ideology. Festivals have been a very important tool in Mongolia, where they traditionally play a prominent community-building role. People wear traditional clothes and sing folk songs while competing in traditional sports such as archery and horse riding. Buddhist monks recite mantras and shamans play drums, Soviet-style military bands play the anthem and the national flag is raised, all in one place. My photography aims to capture the eclectic nature of how national identity is constructed in post-Socialist Mongolia.

Photographed and written by Darya Shumilova