Arina shares a 30 square meter room in a communal apartment with her mother and sister. They moved here after Arina's mother divorced with her father. Before, they always had an apartment of their own.
Interior of a communal apartment. Most communal apartments have been created in Imperial-era residential buidings, many of them have never been renovated since they were built in 19 - early 20 centuries.
Marina (right), a real estate agent, eating breakfast with her daughter Arina. Marina and two of her three children share a 30 square meter room where they moved after she divorced with her husband.
Interior of a kitchen in a communal apartment. Every household is supposed to have a cooking table and a cupboard of their own. Kitchens, corridors, toilets, bathrooms in communal housing are referred to as "areas of public use" and are not always well maintained.
A mosaic date in the entryway of an old apartment building where most apartments are communal. Many of such buildings have never been renovated since there way built in 19 - early 20 centuries, hence eternal problems with plumbing, heating and other utilities.
A dining table and a TV. Most Russians like eating in the kitchen but residents of communal apartments cannot and do it in their rooms.
Andrei and Ksenia share one room with their parents in a large communal apartment.
Detail of a bookshelf.
Adele Kirillovna, a retired editor of a scientific journal, has spent her entire life in communal housing. She says she has no prospects for getting out of here.
Drying laundry in a communal apartment. Lack of space and privacy is one of the main pains for those living in communal housing.
A stairwell in a typical 19th century building which mainly consists of communal apartments.
Larisa Vasilievna (right) and her daughter Olga having a smoke in their communal kitchen. Larisa, a retired civil engineer, has spent her entire life in communal apartments like this one. She has been living here since 1965.
A kitchen of a communal apartment. Each household is supposed to have a fridge, a cupboard and a cooking table of their own.
Nastya, 4, waits while her mother makes her bed. Nastya lives with her parents and a sister in a 20-square-meter room. This one-family-one-room situation is very common in St.Petersburg.
Natalia Kulakova lives with her husband and two children in one 20-sq-meter room in a communal apartment. She rents another room in the same apartment to run her private children's early development centre.
View from a communal apartment onto a typical courtyard in a Soviet-built neighbourhood. Although newly built housing was not designed to accommodate communal flats, lack of housing forced authorities to continue the practice of placing several families in one apartment.
Anastasia, an arist, owns a room in a communal apartment and uses it as a studio.
Marina, a designer, rents a room in a communal apartment. Communal rooms for rent is an affordable alternative to individual flats.
Ceiling with traces of plumbing problems. Many old buildings like the one where this flat is located have never seen a renovation since they were built in 19 - early 20 centuries, hence eternal problems with plumbing, heating, and other utilities.
Ksenia, 6, lives with her parents and a sister in a 20-square-meter room. This one-family-one-room situation is very common in St.Petersburg.
A room in a communal apartment. It belongs to Dmitry, 23, a surgeon. He says his mother helped him buy this room because they could not afford a separate flat. "As long as I am not married, I am fine here, it's centrally located and I have good friends among neighbours..."
A cleaning schedule sticked on a door in the kitchen of a communal apartment.
Nastya, 4, lives in a 20-square-meter room with her mother, father and sister. Her mother Natalya rents another room in the same communal apartment as playspace for her private children's early development centre.
A typical turn-of-the-century block of flats. Most communal apartments have been created in Imperial-era residential buidings, many of them have never been renovated since they were built in 19 - early 20 centuries.
Anna, an assistant lawyer, rents a room in a communal apartment.
Misha, a migrant worker from Kyrgyzstan, has been living in this communal room with this family for the last 20 years.
A self-made magazine cover depicting migrant worker Misha's daughter. The poster hangs on the wall in Misha's communal room.
Slava plays with his two daughters. Slava, his wife Natalia and their two children live in a 20-sq-meter room in a communal apartment.
A migrant worker from Azerbaijan poses for picture in a dilapidated communal kitchen.
Street scene in a neighbourhood where most housing is communal.
Youths hang out in the street in a neighbourhood where most housing is communal.
A boy cooks in his dilapidated communal kitchen.
A toilet in a communal apartment. The so-called "areas of public use" - toilets, kitchens, corridors - are often the worst-maintained in communal housing.
Sasha, 49, former driver, lives only a paperboard wall away from his former wife, whom he divorced long ago, daughter and granddaughter. Two weeks after this picture was taken, Sasha got drunk and set an accidental fire in his room which killed his friend and severely injured himself.
A man relaxing after a wash in a public bath. In many communal apartments, there is still no hot water, and people have to go to public baths to wash.
A communal kitchen with two gas stoves.
Locals hang out in the street in a neighbourhood where most housing is communal.
A communal kitchen.
A gateway of a residential building in a neigbhourhood where most housing is communal.