Uldus Bakhtiozina

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Uldus Bakhtiozina
Bakhtiozina Uldus Vildanovna

(1986-07-22) 22 July 1986 (age 34)
EducationUniversity of the Arts London
Known forPainting, photography, art, design
MovementVisual arts

Bakhtiozina Uldus Vildanovna (born 22 July 1986) is a Russian artist, film director, and photographer, known as the first Russian speaker in TED who documents folklore's fairy tales and challenges social stereotypes through the prism of her photographs, and one of Top 100 Women of the 2014 year according to the BBC channel.

Early years[edit]

Uldus was born in Saint Petersburg, (former Leningrad of USSR), in a family with mixed religions and nationalities: a Muslim tatars father, a Christian half Ukrainian mother and a Jewish step-sister. Uldus considers herself as a "child of rebuilding time" Perestroika in Russia, with open minds and free from stereotypes. At the beginning of her career she directed videos for German musicians Popnoname – Anna, Change, and Russian singer's Ilya Lagutenko Keta's project KETA – Clown.

Her first professional work as a photographer was series of ironic self-portraits, while she was studying in London, at University of the Arts London, Central Saint Martins and London College of Communications. Though, she has received much influence on her art from the first degree in politics, which she gained in Russia at West-North Academy of public administration. National brackets, created by Russian society and everyday rejection to accept someone different had motivated Uldus to leave Russia when she was 21 years old and started a new life in London. She spent abroad 5 years in total, 3 years in England and 2 years in Asia (India, Nepal, Indonesia, Hong-Kong). Those travels gave to Bakhtiozina a wider perception of life, helped to open to the world her vision since she got the feeling that being different is much better than hiding it, and faking the invisibility.


Despite the modern technology level, she prefers an analog camera instead of digital to catch the nature of an object, show its deepest edges and soul beneath them. For that purposes she uses medium format camera 6x7 and 120 film Kodak and old 35 mm film Leica R3 camera. All around objects, costumes, make-up, and outfit are produced by her own to fill the story behind each photograph with her vision and imagination. That's an important part of her works to make them unique and unforgettable.

Nowadays Uldus working in her motherland, where she has opened her studio of visual arts. She works with the young generation of Russians, telling their stories in her art photography. Bakhtiozina's works are mixed with real stories and art vision, she creates photography with full respect to an aesthetic, focusing on balancing meaningful message and beauty. Bakhtiozina challenges to gender and cultural norms with humor and magic, creating a fairy tale world for the viewer. Her works represent the young generation of Russians today.

In 2014 Uldus became first Russian speaker in a history of TED, talking at TED conference in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada about her photo project Desperate Romantics.[1] She gave her second TED talk in 2017. [2]

Uldus also spoke at Conference CDI conference in Mexico, as a finalist of Gifted Citizen Prize.[3] In October 2014 Uldus was named one of the strongest women 2014 according to the BBC and took part in BBC debates and TV program 100 women,[4] there her works were shown published at BBC channel. Uldus's photography was published in Vogue Italy, Aesthetica Magazine, C-41 Magazine, and many other international publishers. Bakhtiozina's works widely exhibited in Russia, England, Berlin, Hong-Kong, Singapore, and Milan. One of her work is now in the collection of Ruya Foundation for Contemporary Culture in Iraq RUYA is an Iraqi registered non-profit, non-governmental organization founded by Iraq art and culture enthusiasts with the aim of aiding and enriching culture in Iraq, and building cultural bridges with the world.

In April 2015 Uldus's artwork was selected and nominated in Leica + Vogue Italia with an exhibition in Milan.

Since 28 May and 29 August, Uldus's photographs have been exhibited in Anna Nova Gallery, Saint-Petersburg, Russia. Four of her works were included in Fabergé Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia collection. Also, Uldus was awarded as a winner in May 2015 in TOP-50 Noble People of Saint-Petersburg by Sobaka.ru [1]

Uldus is author and photographer of serial of photos for the movie "He is dragon" poster (original "Он-дракон" [2])

in 2016 Vogue Italy named Uldus best fashion photographer at Photo Vogue

in 2017 Uldus became a finalist of Prestigious Laguna Art prize

In July 2019 her short fashion film, One Day of Summer, had its premiere at La Jolla Fashion Film Festival and was nominated for six awards including Best Filmmaking.

Uldus is an ambassador of Women in Culture.

Uldus is a Gucci Beauty Ambassador and created a series of photographs for their perfume, The Alchemist’s Garden in 2019

In the 2019/20 Season, Uldus made her debut at Royal Opera House [3] as a costume and make-up designer and style supervisor for Aisha and Abhaya [4], a co-production between The Royal Ballet and Rambert.

In 2020 she has completed her work as a film director, scriptwriter, costume designer and producer for her feature film debut Tzarevna Scaling ((original "Дочь рыбака" [5])


  • Best of Russia 2011, awarded in "Style" category, group exhibition, Vinzavod, Moscow[5]
  • Self universe Gaze Gallery, Berlin, Germany, May 2013[6]
  • Desperate Romantics Anna Nova Gallery, Saint-Petersburg, Russia, September 2013[7]
  • Mysterious Russian soul, part of Vogue Italia + Leica Exhibitions, announced in April 2015
  • Russ Land Anna Nova Gallery, Saint-Petersburg, Russia, May–August 2015[8]
  • The Artist Knight, group exhibition Kasteel van gaasbeek, Brussels, Belgium, July 2017[9]
  • Conjured life, Anna Nova Gallery, Saint-Petersburg, Russia, May-June 2017 [10]
  • Circus 17, Anna Nova Gallery, Saint-Petersburg, Russia, November 2017 [11]
  • Film screening exhibition, MULTIMEDIA ART MUSEUM, MOSCOW, November 2017
  • Miss Future, the exhibition at SEEN gallery, Brussels, Belgium August 2019



  1. ^ "TED conference 2014". ted.com/. Retrieved 14 March 2014.
  2. ^ "TED conference 2017". ted.com/. Retrieved 24 April 2017.
  3. ^ "GIFTED CITIZEN PRIZE". http://www.podercivico.org.mx/. Retrieved 4 November 2014. External link in |work= (help)
  4. ^ "Who are the 100 Women 2014?". bbc.com/. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
  5. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Brandreal hangover". thebestofrussia.ru/. Retrieved 5 May 2011.
  6. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Vorurteile". gaze-gallery.com/. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  7. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Desperate romantics". annanova-gallery.ru/en/. Retrieved 26 September 2013.
  8. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Russ Land". Retrieved 28 May 2015.
  9. ^ "The artist knight group exhibition". https://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kasteel_van_Gaasbeek. Retrieved 11 July 2017. External link in |work= (help)
  10. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Russ Land". Retrieved 17 May 2017.
  11. ^ "Uldus Bakhtiozina, Russ Land". Retrieved 7 November 2017.

External links[edit]