As an artist, Anne Bobroff-Hajal paints detailed and whimsical visual stories about powerful human motivations: love, greed, grief, competition, fury – as shaped by the geographic landscapes on which those humans live.
Bobroff-Hajal’s background in animation, painting, and Russian history have merged in her project collectively titled Playground of the Autocrats. This series of artworks draws on animation techniques, icons, and such formats as graphic novels to tell stories of the Russian steppe and its history from Ivan the Terrible to today. She has developed a complex process of repeated layering of painting on digital images of her own paintings and of photographs.
Bobroff-Hajal has been an artist all her life – with the enhancement of earning a Ph. D. in Russian History (mentored by Gerda Lerner and later William G. Rosenberg). She lived in the USSR for an extraordinary year researching what became her scholarly book, Working Women in Russia Under the Hunger Tsars: Political Activism and Daily Life. Bobroff-Hajal recently returned to St. Petersburg, Russia, for the Manifesta 10 Biennial, particularly its Public Programs curated by Joanna Warsza. She conducts interviews for Yale University Radio’s The Art World Demystified, and has written extensively about Russian history and art.