Not all cemeteries are imbued with hushed reverence and a solemn demeanor. While visiting graves in America might be a somber affair, in other parts of the world, it’s a party. Case in point: Moldova, the landlocked country nestled between Romania and Ukraine. As part of their celebration of Orthodox Easter, Moldovans head to the cemeteries, laden with picnics and good cheer. After pouring a glass of wine in the ground near the tombstones of their dearly departed, they celebrate.
In these photos, Rome-based photographer Carlo Gianferro takes to the graveyard with families gathered to honor relatives who have given up the ghost. The series, Lunch with the Dead, chronicles the celebrants and the lavish spreads which they bestow. And along the way, Gianferro captures something almost ephemeral in nature; the singular expressions of mourning tinged with joy.
This post was contributed by writer and photographer Melissa Breyer.