I was born in Rostov-on-Don, USSR (now Russia) in 1984 and grew up in 90’s, which was one strangest time for my country. We had just stepped away from totalitarianism into troubled seas of capitalism, rising criminality and oligarchy. These roots of murky contemporary Russian history are important for me. Born in the country with all things terribly uncertain and unclear, I was desperate to find my spot of serenity.
My first photographs and collages were made in school in late 90’s, but there was not a single dream about education in art. Russia didn’t embrace artists. Contemporary art was not flourishing in Russia, inspiring one young generation after another. In Soviet times art was either nonconformist (almost criminal), or official (totalitarian).
My generation was first one after USSR, all bad experiences of previous ones were still there. I was neither into fighting, nor into obeying. Art was complicated field, so I entered the Russian Southern University at the faculty of psychology and graduated in 2007 with a bachelor degree.
After university I worked as art journalist and editor, and only in 2014 left office job to dedicate myself to photography. I came to photography because I felt that I have never had enough time to keep up with a moment, experience, place or a person, and photography allows me to hold the moment and acquire it for myself. Being late, being behind, not having enough time to keep up with changes is probably a key feeling of the contemporary era with its constant transformations. I have reflected on this state in my landscape series ‘’Chaos Under Construction’’ where I was trying to grasp a rapidly changing moments of life and experience of taking a shot.
My choice of the method — building colour fields with vintage cameras and prisms, without subsequent retouching — was based on a desire to see my 90s digital camera and its primitive artificial intelligence not as a mere tool, but as a collaborator, assisting me in my effort to slow down, to keep on with the moment. I tested this collaboration while giving «tasks», such as various prisms and glasses, to the camera and see if it can or can not accomplish them, can it manage the focus, what kind of glitches it may end up with. Thus the authorship of my shots become shared with this simple AI which — just like me — troubles processing a complex reality constructed for it.
In 2017 I moved to UK, where continued to experiment with photography and adding new media to my work.