Elena Slobtseva is a visual multidisciplinary artist, working with installation, objects and animation/video. The themes that Slobtseva refers to are traumas of construction, destruction and reconstruction, the dialectics of breaking and repair. Her favourite material has been metal staples, which enable the artist to speak on the current political and social issues, as in Crimea, 2015, Replay, 2019 or Spiders, 2022, staying within the framework of minimalist abstraction.      


Born in 1981 in Perm, Russia, Elena Slobtseva studied in Russia and USA for her Master’s degree in English Literature and Art. Gravitating towards minimalism and formal experimentation, Elena creates installations, objects, drawings, and animations, the protagonists of which are often office and construction staples of various sizes. The staple can act as a graphic element or a stroke, hold together disparate elements or roughly cut into surfaces. The themes that Slobtseva refers to are traumas of construction, destruction and reconstruction, binding, and separation. Selected group shows include Moscow International Biennale of Young Art (2014), the 1st Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art, Moscow (2017), The 12th Time Zone — A Contemporary Art Report from Russia, Brussels (2019), Nemoskva is Just Around the Corner, St. Petersburg (2020). Nominee for the 2021 Innovation Prize as the “Artist of the Year” (2021) for her solo show Culture of Materials (2020). Worked and lived in Perm. Since 2022, works and lives in Batumi, Georgia.



2014-2015 — school of engaged art “Chto delat?” St. Petersburg

2012-2013 — school of contemporary art “Artpolitika”, Perm

2005-2006 — Bowling Green State University, English Literature, Fulbright Grant

1998-2003 — Perm State University, English and Literature

Solo shows

2020 — Culture of materials, PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm

2013 — Billboards, Green Art Gallery, Perm


2023 — PERMM Museum of contemporary art

2021 — Ural Hermitage, Yekaterinburg, installation “Gorodki” (“Towns”), wooden bars, large metal staples    

2020 — VLADEY auction, Moscow, Vladey. Love and corruption (sold to the private collection)

2017 — VLADEY auction, , Moscow, Vladey. This ain’t Moscow (sold to the private collection)

Selected group shows and other projects


Pause/Play: Culture under Pressure — online and offline part in Yerevan, Armenia  

“Сечение” (Section) — Eltsin Center, Yekaterinburg, Russia 

Common ground — Pop-up gallery, event by DUO Contradiction, Stockholm, Sweden

“Последствия как средства” (Consequences as means) — Elektrozavod gallery, Moscow

Being here: particles — art laboratory, Makhinjauri, Georgia

ძაფი. Thread. Нить — tmp_space, Batumi, Georgia

თებერვალი. February. Лютий. Февраль — tmp_space, Batumi, Georgia


Connecting the Dots — a group show of the residency “Artists in Exile program”, Ria Keburia Foundation, Georgia 

Passengers. Landscape dialogues — gallery “Tsarskaya bashnya”, Kazansky Rail Terminal, Moscow

Feminine totally  — Ground Solyanka, Moscow    


Postanimation. Disorienting effect — Ground Solyanka, Moscow  

Comfortable Memory — video mapping on the factory building, within a series of events dedicated to the Aramil cloth factory, Aramil, Russia

Exhibition of the Award “Innovation-2021” Nominees — Kremlin Arsenal, Nizhny Novgorod

Tochki opory (Fulcrum) — group exhibition, Hermitage-Ural, Yekaterinburg

The Fence/“What’s inside me/us?” — temporary public art, Samara Volgafest 2021, in collaboration with PERMM museum of contemporary art, Samara

Cages for exhibits — site-specific installation at Perm State University, Perm


Culture of materials — personal show, PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm  

Ural Art: Interweaving Communities. Introduction — group exhibition, Sinara art gallery, Yekaterinburg

Waiting hall. Exhibition of Perm artists at Perm II — group exhibition at Perm-II railway station, Perm

Nemoskva is just around the corner — Central exhibition hall Manege, St. Petersburg

Room4us — group zoom project — https://room4us.whiteroom.foundation/

Masters of Empty Space — gallery Lyuda, St. Petersburg


The point of Growth — Gallery KultProekt, Moscow

The 12th Time Zone — A Contemporary Art Report from Russia, Nemoskva project, BOZAR, Brussels

The end of Perm — Perm cultural center, Perm

In Your Trace. Inspirational Forces in Russian and Hungarian Contemporary Art — issuu.com/budapestartweek/docs/nyomotokban_katalogus? fbclid=IwAR1T4lut4PrfEeAXCRzKUmE-wgfzxmsgwQP03EODEV4j4×4hJadGIbKlDyM,  Mikve Gallery, Budapest


Transitory state — Shpagin’s factory, Perm

Imya Rek — PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm

Insects — joint project with Elana Neil, Pop-Up gallery, Brighton, UK

VDNH —  www.facebook.com/events/180445019331686 — Marina Gisich Gallery, St. Petersburg

Perm 3 —  permm.ru/#/event/perm-tretya-antologiya/, perm3.permm.ru/Slobceva/PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm


Mechanisms of emergence — cyland.org/lab/exhibition-project-mechanisms-of-emergence/? Lyuda gallery, St. Petersburg 

It’s time for me to decay and you to blossom 1-2 — Kunst House, Tartu, Estonia; Voronja Gallery, Estonia

Fractals and structures —  Gallery KultProekt, Moscow

The 1st Garage Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art — Museum Garage, Moscow

Culture Patrol - Perm cultural center, Perm


Geopoetics — PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm

My universities — PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm

Shape of the unseen — Winzavod, Ceh krasnogo, Moscow

Live emptiness — PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm


VIDEO JAM @Blaze Festival 2015 — Manchester, UK

Shape of the unseen — Perm museum of contemporary art, Perm

6 collective exercises in utopia: The Children’s Room — Artmuza, St. Petersburg

The promise of landscape — PERMM museum of contemporary art, Perm

Oh yeah, I remember — gallery “Lyuda”, St. Petersburg


Madatac, International official section program — Plaza Cibeles 1, Madrid

Everybody’s a bit worried — a special project of the Moscow international biennale for young art 2014,  Nagornaya gallery, Moscow

Thickness — the Art residence space, Perm


Anthropology — Perm Central Exhibition Hall, Perm

View — Artpolitika group exhibition, Art residency, Perm


Yelena Slobtseva. “Drawing in the Margins: Understanding Doodles”. International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 3, Issue 4, pp.87-96. 2009

SLOBTSEVA, Yelena — Drawing in the margins.Bowling Green: Graduate College of Bowling Green State University, 2006. 56 p. Master’s Thesis.
DOI: 10.18848/1833-1866/CGP/v03i04/35475

Selected Bibliography 

Triennial of Russian Contemporary Art. Exhibition guide. Sasha Obukhova. Elena Slobtseva, pp.144-145, Moscow, Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, 2017

Анна Суворова, “От “Русского бедного” к “Разрезанию зоны комфорта”, стр. 394-400. //Трагедия в углу: Актуальное искусство России. / Сост. .Щ. Мачулина. Арт-путеводитель. 2018

Вера Гиренко. “В скобах много разных смыслов”. Художник Елена Слобцева — о скобах как метафоре людских сообществ и своей выставке в музее PERMM https://www.newsko.ru/articles/nk-6289537.html — 11 декабря 2020

Innovation-2021, catalogue — Nizhny Novgorod  

Russian Art in the New Millennium, Unicorn Publishing Group, 2022, by Edward Lucie-SmithSergei Reviakin 

Teaching and workshops

2020, 2015-2016 — “Game design”, Perm school of design “Dot”

2019 — “Animation for theatre performance”, Perm school of design “Dot”

2016 — workshop for elderly people at PERMM Museum of contemporary art “Self-portrait on the kitchen board”

2016 — workshop on photo and hand-made augmented reality, Perm cultural center

2015 — workshop “On the tactile”, PERMM Museum of contemporary art

2015 — workshop for children “Magnets, staples, cities”, PERMM museum of contemporary art public program

2015 — workshop for children “Staples and maps”, PERMM museum of contemporary art public program

2014-2015 -“Stop motion animation”, Perm school of design “Dot”

Work in theatre and film

2019 — kinetic object “Tumbleweed” for VityaVilisov’s 6-hour performance “MotherRussia”, Shpagin’s factory, Perm, in collaboration with Arsen Gasparyan

2016 — “Waiting”, The Actors’ house, Perm, animation

2016 — “Hit”, director Margarita Mikhailova, animation over video, artist

2013 — Theatre “Stage-Molot”, Perm, video artist, set designer — “Riverside Drive”

2013 — Theatre “Stage-Molot”, Perm, video artist, set designer — “We’re fine”

2012 — Theatre “Stage-Molot”, Perm, video artist, children’s play “Captain Koko”

BIO/CV. Elena Slobtseva is a visual multidisciplinary artist