Ukrainian artist, photodocumentist Alena Grom was born in Donetsk. Ms. Grom’s childhood was in the 1980s, at a time when the trees and shrubs started being planted in the mining capital and the center of metallurgy and coal dust was turned into a city garden. After school she graduated from Donetsk College of Culture and Arts and went into business. The difficult financial situation in the 1990s did not allow Ms. Grom to go to university and get a higher education. Only after she felt her own economic confidence, she entered a computer academy where she mastered the design, the basics of filmmaking, etc. In 2008 she took up photography. Ms. Grom photographed landscapes and nature, which soon became boring and no longer fascinating. She abandoned photography for several years until she became a mother. When she was walking with a child, Ms. Grom began to shoot again. The artist’s new passion was street photography — dynamic and emotional. By this time Ms. Grom fulfilled her dream — built a house in which she celebrated a housewarming party in January 2014, but in April she was forced to leave her home and hometown due to military events in Donbass.
However, even after physically leaving her hometown, she did not leave it emotionally. Her region turned into a daily military chronicle, where the 24 hours were estimated at the number of killed and wounded, and her house was robbed and shot down by marauders. In such conditions photography has become a salvation for Ms. Grom and a way to escape from a traumatic reality.
Since 2015 the artist has studied in photography schools: she graduated from Bird In Flight School, the Victor Marushchenko Photography School, attended numerous lectures and master classes for photographers, art critics, cultural managers and curators. During her studies Ms. Grom began to think serially, each of her projects — a separate story — with a holistic narrative and drama.
Ms. Grom began to work with meaningful and complex topics that relate to her. A war-torn Donbass region, immigrants and refugees were the first to appear in the lens of her camera. However, her photos are not illustrations of pity or grief, they are an affirmation of life. Life against the odds — one of the main themes of the artist.
Alena Grom works at the junction of social reporting and conceptual photography. She works on her topics on the front line. The artist sees her “mission” in covering the lives of people who find themselves in a “gray zone” or a zone close to military action. With her every shot (a wordplay and reference to gun shooting) she targets propaganda and forms the image of the existing difficult reality. With her photographs, Ms. Grom tries to inform the world community about the complexities of military everyday life, tragedy of war and faith in the world. Alena Grom’s photography has been rated at many photo contests.
The author was a laureate and winner of international photo contests:
2018 International Photographer Of The Year USA / Silver medal;
2018 Kaunas Photo Star Lithuania / Finalist / Exhibition;
2018 LensCulture Portrait Awards United Kingdom / Finalist / Publication. Exhibition;
2018 Slovak Press Photo / Finalist / Exhibition;
2018 International Photography Awards USA / Honorary Award;
2018 Gallery Black Box Portland USA / Publication. Online exhibition;
2018 Bronx Documentary Center USA / Publication. Exhibition;
2018 PhotogrVphy Grant USA / Short list;
2018 «Magazine 43» International Journal of Contemporary Art / Publication;
2018 SAS L’Œil de la Photographie / Publication of the French online magazine on contemporary art;
2017 10 NBPC SALON OF PHOTOGRAPHY India / Short list / Exhibition;
2017 Fairmount Ave Art Philadelphia, USA / Exhibition;
2017 Kolga Tbilisi Photo Georgia / Short list/ Publication, Exhibition;
2017 PhotOn Festival International Festival of Photojournalism Spain/ Short list / Exhibition;
2017 ANIMA MUNDI festival Palazzo Ca’ Zanardi Venice / Publication, Exhibition;
2017 Bogotà, at Jorge Jurado Gallery Colombia/ Exhibition;
2016 PHOTOGRAPHY SALOON «STROM» / Silver medal The Royal Photographic Society / Exhibition;
2016 Lion City International Salon Singapore /2nd place / Exhibition;
2016 LivePressPhoto Ukraine / Bronze medal / Exhibition;
2016 93th Scottish International Salon of Photography / Short list / Publication. Exhibition;
2016 Grand Photo Salon 2016 Ukraine/ Short list / Exhibition;
2016 Pavlovka Gallery / Personal exhibition;
2016 «Оpplev Ukraina!» Norway/ Exhibition;
2016 «Pottery Country Visions» Ukraine / Exhibition;
2015 «My best photo Ukraine» / 2nd place/ Exhibition;
2014 «#EuroMaidan: Rising for Freedom and Democracy in Ukraine» Canada / participation in the project/Book;
2012 V International Photo Contest «PhotoVintage» /2nd place Ukraine / Publication. Exhibition;
Now the author is working on her own photo book.