Behind the hills, in South Ossetia, lies Zaza's home, Tskhavati. What is it like to know your hometown is so close and yet not be able to be there? Since 2009, Zaza has been living with other Georgians from South Ossetia in Tserovani, a settlement built for Georgians expelled from their country after the 2008 Caucasus conflict. South Ossetia is recognized as independent by only a few states, including Russia. The houses of Tserovani can be seen from afar, they all have red roofs and resemble one another. Internally Displaced People (IDP) is the technical-sounding name for people like Zaza. Two families have stayed in his home village, and his father still lives there too. But living in Tskhavati is not an option for Zaza as militias make life difficult for Georgians there. He is convinced that he will be able to return home within five to ten years. Life for Zaza and his community is about hoping for a new start back in their hometown. What does home mean? Among other things, Zaza finds it in the objects he has taken with him from South Ossetia.

Text: Susanna Koeberle
Photo: Alex Levac