• KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01181 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00210 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09404 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

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“Photography in Kazakhstan is Characterized by Local Flavor”: Interview with Photographer Veronika Lerner

Veronika Lerner is a successful, self-taught Fine Art photographer from Kazakhstan whose work has received international recognition. Early in her career, an image of her grandmother sitting near-naked in her kitchen, was selected for inclusion in the portrait collection of the prestigious 5th Exposure Award exhibition at the Louvre, Paris. Deemed controversial when it appeared online, it embodied Lerner’s interest and talent in conceptual photography. Her portraits have been placed in the international  ‘Shoot The Face’ competition as well as ‘My Amazing Kazakhstan’, and in 2016 and 2022, her series "Strangers" was featured in exhibitions in St. Petersburg. One of Kazakhstan’s finest contemporary photographers, Veronika continues to make a significant contribution to the development of Kazakh photography.   TCA: What inspired you to take up photography? I turned to photography in 2007, when studying to be an artist-designer at college. I had no formal art school training and though keen to develop my own style in drawing, was disillusioned when criticized for my use of shading. Photography allowed me more freedom and with no one editing what I was doing, I was able to express myself fully. TCA: How has your career evolved and what changes have you noticed in the field along the way? After college, I continued taking photos and a post with a print publication led to a second job in which I was required to photograph just about everything. Parallel to my job, I worked independently on creative shoots and by developing my practice, my career in photography was soon in full swing. During that period, my style became much lighter and more cheerful. I moved away from black and white contrast shots towards color and my images became airier and more dynamic.   TCA: Where do you find inspiration for your work? Are there any photographers in particular whose work you admire? I find inspiration in everyday life, new experiences, and the beauty of the world around me.  Henri Cartier-Bresson (1908-2004), is a brilliant photographer. Working as a photo-journalist for Magnum, he pioneered street photography and was the first Western photographer to work ‘freely’ in the former Soviet Union. Capturing seemingly unimportant moments of ordinary life, there is something elusive and eternal about his work.  I greatly admire photographers whose work resonates with the contemporary culture.  Irina Dmitrovskaya was a journalist prior to attaining a degree from Docdocdoc, St Petersburg School of Modern Photography. Focusing on identity and societal constructs, and issues concerning the LGBT+ community, her work raises questions about the Kazakh perception of beauty and femininity and last year, was lauded in the exhibition ‘Bodily Autonomies’ at the Queer Festival, Heidelberg. https://queer-festival.de/bodily-autonomies/ I am also inspired by black and white images in which by Moscow-based Anisiya Kuznina, https://anisiakuzmina.com  explores the concept of individuality; by Evgeny Mokhorev https://heyboymag.com/evgeny-mokhorev-life-through-the-lens-of-emotion-controversy/ for his raw, black and white evocative studies of St Petersburg’s marginalized youth, and by Didar Kushamanov https://t.me/s/kushamanov for his use of camera obscura. In addition to work by other photographers, my approach to subject matter...