Artist | Anthropologist
Anya Vero, the artistic pseudonym for Latvian painter Anya Aleksandrova, uses her first passion – painting – to explore her second passion, anthropology.
She grew up in Riga and Moscow, before moving to the UK in 2005, where she studied Art & Design at the University of the Arts, Fine Art at the University of Oxford and University of the Arts London, and Social Anthropology at The London School of Economics and the School of Oriental and African Studies, where she devised a new methodology in urban anthropology using portraiture painting as an interview technique.
She has since lived in various places around the world, including Seoul, Paris, New Zealand and Vienna, exploring her fascination for how different societies function and interact and using her experiences in these places to craft her artistic style and subject matter.
In 2018, she formed part of the Self Impressions Tate Exchange event at the Tate Modern, organised by the Institute of Philosophy, University of London, exploring different elements of identity alongside a line-up of leading philosophers and neuroscientists.
Later that year she created Art for Freedom, a series of paintings focused on human trafficking. Working in partnership with two Mexican organisations – SINTRATA and the Comisión Unidos Contra la Trata – she used photographs of the survivors they work with to create portraits of them, exhibiting them alongside their stories about their experiences. She showcased the collection at a multidisciplinary event at Carousel Gallery in Mayfair, London, exploring the topic from different dimensions – with talks by a leading Human Rights barrister, international anti-slavery charity A21 and bespoke creations by a perfumer and a songwriter.
In 2019, she moved to Berlin where she released Common Reflections, a series inspired by her love of the human body and face and the way we are constantly juxtaposed in relation to one another. She unveiled it at a vernissage at Diderot Arts Cafe with a Q&A with Christop Klotter, a prominent German psychology professor.
In June 2020, she is unveiling her new collection, Women Groundbreakers, shining a light on a series of exceptional women leaders with a collection of portraits in oil on silk.
Women Ground breakers
History is full of women whose status is far less than their work deserves. This collection aims to acknowledge women groundbreakers, from scientists, engineers and inventors, to artists and other great thinkers.
The idea came from a moment of surprise when I was browsing the How It Works “Book of Great Inventors & Their Inventions”: among a collection of 30 inventors, it included only 1 woman.
It got me thinking – we’ve all heard of Einstein, we’ve all heard of Darwin, and Da Vinci. But history is full of groundbreaking women, most of us have never heard of. I think that reputation should be based on achievement, regardless of gender. And so, I’ve created this collection of paintings to redress that balance.
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