THE ENDLESS LETTER ON INSTAGRAM STORIES

Short List
TitleTHE ENDLESS LETTER ON INSTAGRAM STORIES
BrandRT
Category I05. Cultural Insight
Product/ServiceSOCIAL MEDIA PROJECT
Entrant RT Moscow, RUSSIA
Idea Creation RT Moscow, RUSSIA
Media Placement RT Moscow, RUSSIA
Production RANEPA SCHOOL OF DESIGN Moscow, RUSSIA
Credits
Name Company Position
Kirill Karnovich-Valua RT Creative Director
Elena Medvedeva RT Producer
Ania Fedorova RT Producer
Katerina Terekhova RANEPA School of Design Art Direction
Serge Serov RANEPA School of Design Curator
Maxim Makarychev Maxim Makarychev Music & Sound design
Gleb Burashov RT Social Media Strategy
Revaz Todua RT Designer
Eldar Salamov RT Producer
Lilly Kazakova RT PR Director
Ivor Crotty RT Producer
Ivan Fursov RT Producer
Katya Motyakina RT Producer
Margo Tskhovrebova RT Administrative Manager
Maria Doreuli Contrast Foundry Designer
Nikita Sapozhkov Contrast Foundry Designer
Liza Rasskazova Contrast Foundry Designer
Peter Bankov Bankov Peter Bankov Artist
Mikhail Sorkin Mikhail Sorkin Artist
Alla Dimaryova RANEPA School of Design Student
Ana Green RANEPA School of Design Student
Anahanum Esedullayeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Anastasia Kazachkova RANEPA School of Design Student
Angelina Bagdasaryan RANEPA School of Design Student
Anna Zakharova RANEPA School of Design Student
Irina Chigrinova RANEPA School of Design Student
Irina Uladayeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Alana Zekeyeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Alyona Khudyakova RANEPA School of Design Student
Alyona Redikultseva RANEPA School of Design Student
Alisa Patrina RANEPA School of Design Student
Anastasia Manysheva RANEPA School of Design Student
Anastasia Ryabinina RANEPA School of Design Student
Arina Bychkova RANEPA School of Design Student
Baina Muchkayeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Daniil Protasov Artist Protasov RANEPA School of Design Student
Daria Kondakova RANEPA School of Design Student
Diana Yaroslavtseva RANEPA School of Design Student
Ekaterina Fateyeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Ekaterina Gashnikova RANEPA School of Design Student
Evgenia Zaikina RANEPA School of Design Student
Irina Gorelikova RANEPA School of Design Student
Julia Fyodorova RANEPA School of Design Student
Kira Goldobina RANEPA School of Design Student
Kseniya Pasternyak RANEPA School of Design Student
Liza Razzhivina RANEPA School of Design Student
Liza Tikhanskaya RANEPA School of Design Student
Maria Afonchikova RANEPA School of Design Student
Maria Alekseyeva RANEPA School of Design Student
Maria Spevakova RANEPA School of Design Student
Maria Timoshenko RANEPA School of Design Student
Nauel Benku RANEPA School of Design Student
Polina Kashintseva RANEPA School of Design Student
Polina Zolotova RANEPA School of Design Student
Sasha Ashikhina RANEPA School of Design Student
Svetlana Vinogradova RANEPA School of Design Student
Uliana Budennaya RANEPA School of Design Student
Uma Rabadanova RANEPA School of Design Student
Valeria Zhalnina RANEPA School of Design Student
Yana Nesterenko RANEPA School of Design Student

Background

Between 1941 and 1945 over 25 million letters were posted and delivered in the USSR. Ahead of the 75th anniversary of the Victory against Nazi Germany we have revealed a unique collection of 7,000 letters that were carefully preserved for decades in family archives. We decided to give them a new read in the format of Instagram Stories. “Endless Letter” is a unique graphic series featuring hundreds of excerpts from original WW2 front-line letters with illustrations created by young students of the Moscow RANEPA Design School as well as renowned artists Peter Bankov and Mikhail Sorkin. Emotional quotes from frontline missives were shared line-by-line in Stories creating a kind of "endless letter" with an original non-stop score by young Russian composer Max Makarychev. Letters from military schools, from the front line, from factories, hospitals and abandoned homes, some filled with hope, some carrying cherished last words. 

Describe the strategy

“Endless Letter” – is an emotional bridge between today’s peace and the horrific times of war when, against all odds, people loved, dreamed, experienced faith and anxiety. With “Endless Letter” our objective was to link the generations by narrative and visual means, with hope that our contemporaries and descendants will understand why this page of history should never be repeated. These letters open up a different, private, story of the war; it is a unique testimony that truly connects us with that time. They speak of daily life during the war - what soldiers saw on battlefronts, how their families survived back at home, what people dreamed of, what they hoped for. More than 500 short quotes and accompanying illustrations by young designers are put together into a single “graphic” narrative on Instagram Stories to a non-stop original music score.

Describe the execution

We partnered with Moscow’s RANEPA Design School to make artistic illustrations to accompany each quote. Teachers, students, as well as famous artists Mikhail Sorkin and Peter Bankov took part in the project. Participation in the project was significant for students not only on an educational level, but also as a human experience, deeply affecting their emotions, feelings of empathy and compassion. It resulted in over 500 illustrations in a variety of shapes, from collages to portraits.  A specially composed 4-hour-long continuous soundtrack by Maxim Makarychev adds to the atmosphere of the “Endless Letter”. The project features the unique #VictoryFont "May" which was created specially for the project - behind each character is a documented Reichstag inscription, hand-written 75 years ago by soldiers who conquered Berlin in 1945. In September 2020 a large-scale exhibition was held in 12 main Moscow parks featuring over 250 works of the students.

List the results

"Lessons of Auschwitz" is part of the #VictoryPages project - a versatile social media documentary commemorating the 75th anniversary of the defeat of Nazi Germany. The digital, multi-platform, educational project assesses the historical magnitude of May 9th, 1945 through personal impressions of contemporaries and from the fresh perspective of digital art and creativity. It is a story of Victory told by the young, for the young, using the tools and language of modern media over five social networks.  Results: - 40+ young artists - 500+ unique illustrations - Non-stop Instagram Stories soundtrack over 4 hours long - Over 2 million views - 100,000 engagements - 30,000 subscribers - Over 200 media mentions Since the start of #VictoryPages on January 13th 2020 the project generated more than 35 million impressions, 250,000 engagements, over 50,000 followers, 4,000,000 video views (800,000 minutes of watch time) and 200+ publications in media. 

Please tell us about the cultural insight that inspired the work

This project is about the fate of an ordinary person. A soldier. A wife. A mother. A child. A father. It is a story of families who had to face such a horrid burden - a story about millions of people who lived and died during the second World War. One can only truly understand the full scale through emotional experience: through personal stories. And there is nothing more personal than letters. The team worked with the renowned “Letters from the front” archive, perhaps, the most full collection of families’ war-time letters. It took the authors over 5 years to gather thousands of frontline letters from all over Russia. We decided to use the piercing quotes to create the “Endless Letter” and post them as Instagram Stories.