Known for being the city with the highest rate of beautiful women in Ukraine and having an intriguing 6 women for 1 man ratio, Nikolaev counts more than 200 wedding agencies around the city dedicated to western souls in quest for true love.
The urban legend says it is thanks to the Empress Catherine II of Russia who, wanting to reward the workers of her new war shipyard, sent the most beautiful women of the Empire.
However, beyond the relative probability of a mainly feminine descent and moreover of supreme beauty, the economic reality might be the explanation. At the collapse of the USSR, the city of Nikolaev, which once was the top-notch of naval construction, slowly closed down the sites. Workers left the town for the nearby Odessa and its work market. With the only weapons Mother Nature gave them, the women of Nikolaev try to find a favourable outcome to their difficult future.
In the following diptych, only one of the two is in a wedding agency.
Think beyond stereotypes.
by Julie David de Lossy and Colin Delfosse