Aliona Kuznetsova is a photographer based in San Francisco. She has always defined herself with three words: curious, passionate, stubborn. People, stories and cultures of the world are bottomless sources of inspiration for Kuznetsova. She always felt the need to engage with people on a deeper, empathic level. This led her to photography. Before long her new hobby became a full time job. For a year Kuznetsova polished her skills in a studio working as a portrait photographer. This work brought her an understanding of light, faces, and experience working with people outside the fashion industry. This experience also gave her an understanding of how to express strong emotions in a subtly. Ultimately she felt that portrait photography still lacked the tools for her to express herself, so she started to work in fashion.
“My curiosity came from a diversity of circumstances. My parents are geologists and I grew up listening to tales of their travels; l we spent summers in the countryside growing food for winter. For my parents, it was a way to survive, but for me and my brother, it felt like an amazing adventure. I was always a force of nature, emotional, and strong-headed. These qualities helped me push and go all in with my art. Later, my passions turned out to be early signs of bipolar type 1. When passion and curiosity wore off with medication, I had ,my stubbornness to keep me going. Every day I raised my middle finger to the misery of my reality, and I tried to create. All in all, I believe that my art is a mashup of everything I saw, felt, thought and experienced. Through all my life – four countries I lived in, dozens of cities I traveled to, a mood disorder I am battling, my art helped me to refine understanding of who I really am.”
After her studies she moved to Switzerland. Six years there brought her success as she was published in Forbes, Marie Claire, Elle Swiss and many other magazines. After this she started collaborating with leading model agencies and designers. This fashion experience gave Kuznetsova a vision of art as a tool for direct empathy that does not require words. Too often, people who are going through strong complicated emotions find themselves estranged from those around them. But discovering an art piece – a song, a painting or a photograph – they can feel connection to someone else who felt the same way. After moving to America she felt a wonderful response to her art, which has been exhibited at Liquid Art House, Raw Artists Showcase NYC and The Trident Cafe. Currently Kuznetsova is in the process of creating her first photo book - Vague Sensations.