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Inspiring Photographic TED Talk with Photographer – Uldus Bakhtiozina

I have created a special section within TheAppWhisperer to publish inspiring photographic related TED talks to. The first that I am publishing today is staring Uldus Bakhtiozina, she’s a fabulous photographer and one that I interviewed recently for Vogue.  “My life in general can be described in one phrase, ‘analytical spontaneity’, I analyze my surroundings and take spontaneous action”. Uldus Bakhtiozina in conversation with Joanne Carter, PhotoVogue Columnist…

Please read the complete article and admire her wonderful images go here.

Please enjoy her video TED talk below and I have also attached the text transcript.

TED Talk

Good afternoon. My name is Uldus. I am a photo-based artist from Russia. I started my way around six years ago with ironic self-portraits to lay open so many stereotypes about nationalities, genders, and social issues — [“I am Russian. I sell drugs, guns, porno with kids!”] [“Vodka = water. I love vodka!”] (Laughter) — using photography as my tool to send a message. [“Marry me, I need a visa.”]


Today, I am still performing in front of the camera and trying to be brave like Wonder Woman. I focus on balancing meaningful message, aesthetic, beauty, composition, some irony, and artifacts.


Today, I’m going to tell you about my project, which is named Desperate Romantics. They’re my artifacts, or paintings from pre-Raphaelites Brotherhood England mid-19th century. I took the painting and gifted new, contemporary meaning talking about issues which are surrounding me in Russia, capturing people who are non-models but have an interesting story.


This boy is a professional dancer, only 12 years old, but at secondary school, he hides his dancing classes and is wearing the mask of brutality, trying to be united with the rest of his classmates like a storm trooper has no personality. But this boy has goals and dreams but hides it to be socially accepted, because being different isn’t easy, especially in Russia.


Next portrait interpretation is metaphoric. And this is Nikita, a security guard from one of the bars in St. Petersburg. He likes to say, “You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry,” quoting Hulk from the movie, but I’ve never seen him angry. He hides his sensitivities and romantic side, because in Russia, among guys, that’s not cool to be romantic, but it’s cool to be surrounded with women and look like an aggressive hulk. (Laughter)


Sometimes, in my project, I would take the painting and give it new meaning and new temptation about it. Sometimes, I would compare facial features and playing with words: irony, Iron Man, ironing man. (Laughter)


Through the artifacts, I bring social issues which surround me in Russia into the conversation. Interesting fact about marriage in Russia, that most of the 18, 19-year-old girls are already ready, and dream to get married. We’re taught from childhood, successful marriage means successful life, so most of the girls kind of fight to get a good husband.


And what about me? I’m 27 years old. For Russian society, I’m an old maid and hopeless to ever get married. That’s why you see me in a Mexican fighter mask, in the wedding dress, all desperate in my garden. But remember, irony is the key, and this is actually to motivate girls to fight for goals, for dreams, and change stereotypes. Be brave. Be ironic — it helps. Be funny and create some magic.

Joanne Carter, creator of the world’s most popular mobile photography and art website—— TheAppWhisperer platform has been a pivotal cyberspace for mobile artists of all abilities to learn about, to explore, to celebrate and to share mobile artworks. Joanne’s compassion, inclusivity, and humility are hallmarks in all that she does, and is particularly evident in the platform she has built. In her words, “We all have the potential to remove ourselves from the centre of any circle and to expand a sphere of compassion outward; to include everyone interested in mobile art, ensuring every artist is within reach”, she has said. Promotion of mobile artists and the art form as a primary medium in today’s art world, has become her life’s focus. She has presented lectures bolstering mobile artists and their art from as far away as the Museum of Art in Seoul, South Korea to closer to her home in the UK at Focus on Imaging. Her experience as a jurist for mobile art competitions includes: Portugal, Canada, US, S Korea, UK and Italy. And her travels pioneering the breadth of mobile art includes key events in: Frankfurt, Naples, Amalfi Coast, Paris, Brazil, London. Pioneering the world’s first mobile art online gallery - has extended her reach even further, shipping from London, UK to clients in the US, Europe and The Far East to a global group of collectors looking for exclusive art to hang in their homes and offices. The online gallery specialises in prints for discerning collectors of unique, previously unseen signed limited edition art. Her journey towards becoming The App Whisperer, includes (but is not limited to) working for a paparazzi photo agency for several years and as a deputy editor for a photo print magazine. Her own freelance photographic journalistic work is also widely acclaimed. She has been published extensively both within the UK and the US in national and international titles. These include The Times, The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Popular Photography & Imaging, dpreview, NikonPro, Which? and more recently with the BBC as a Contributor, Columnist at Vogue Italia and Contributing Editor at LensCulture. Her professional photography has also been widely exhibited throughout Europe, including Italy, Portugal and the UK. She is currently writing several books, all related to mobile art and is always open to requests for new commissions for either writing or photography projects or a combination of both. Please contact her at: [email protected]

One Comment

  • Carlos

    Very nice window into a one creative Russian POV AND THE SOCIAL “rules”.