Yelena Zhavoronkova

Yelena Zhavoronkova is a California based Fine Art Photographer and Graphic Designer. She received a Master’s degree in Industrial Design from the St. Petersburg Academy of Art and Industry, Russia, and has worked as a graphic designer for over three decades. Over the past decade Yelena has been intensively studying and working in photography, which helps her to express her artistic vision. Yelena’s projects are simultaneously very personal and universal in nature, speaking to the viewers on an intimate level that is familiar to all.

Since 2010 her projects were exhibited in de Young Museum of Arts in San Francisco, Anzenberger Gallery in Vienna, Austria, City Hall of San Francisco and Corden|Potts Gallery, Blue Sky Gallery and LightBox Gallery in Oregon; and many other galleries around the United States and in Europe. Her works were published in the online edition of The New Yorker magazine, featured in Shutterbug magazine and Transformation literary journal, among others. As a part of the Indie Photobook Library Collection Yelena’s “Memories in Red” book is included in the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale University.

Yelena’s Archival Digital, Silver Gelatin and Platinum/Palladium prints are the part of many private collections and institutions in USA and in Europe. Currently she is represented by the Anzenberger Gallery in Vienna, Austria and Corden|Potts Gallery, San Francisco, CA.

Artist’s Statement


Living in Northern California for almost 30 years now I was not aware of harsh climate of beautiful Lake County until recently. It is an amazing place with stunning landscapes, very hot summers and quite cold winters. Not many regular California plants could survive and prosper there. There is only a couple of native trees proven to be right for the area, and the grasses are very strong and adoptive. To continue the genome process in these extreme circumstances, nature has developed its special way to do so by creating the strong vessels to save the seeds of the future generations and hold them until the conditions are right to spread them around. These vessels–cones, pods, acorns–have an extremely powerful presence and contain an immense beauty, which drawn me to start the “GRANA” (Latin for “SEEDS”) series and to celebrate the beauty of the nature.