“Memories from the Labour Camps. Portraits of Bellene Inmates, 1948-1953”

baychev-cover-webAuthor: Petar Baichev

Published by the Institute for Studies of the Recent Past and Ciela Publishers with the kind support of America for Bulgaria Foundation.
Sofia 2014

ISBN: 987-954-28-1603-4

P. Baychev left us a rare genre of testimony, and it is particularly valuable. It is a testimony of images rather than of words: and these images transport through time parts of the very texture of the human beings living inside the barbed wire.

… Baychev’s portraits offer another kind of testimony as well, beyond the identities and the plight of the camp’s inmates. Apart from the link between his models and his drawings, the link between the artist and the surrounding reality is no less intriguing. In a situation of ruthless duress, where every step one made was a matter of strict discipline, and the tiniest departures were severely punished, his prohibited graphic art was an expression of free will.

— Ivaylo Znepolski —