Elena Chernyshova is a Russian documentary photographer based in France. She was born in 1981 in Moscow, USSR.

A self-taught photographer, she developed a passion for this visual language during her studies in the architectural academy. After two years of work as an architect, Elena left her job and bicycled with Gael de Cevoisier from Toulouse to Vladivostok and back again: 30,000 kilometers, 26 countries, 1,004 days of cultural, human, and challenging experiences. The trip led her to decide to become a photographer.

Photography for her is a way to investigate the daily life of different groups and communities in the context of environmental, political, and economic changes. Her work aims to visualize the impact of certain conditions of human activity, ways of adaptation, and diversity of lifestyles.

In 2011 Elena received a grant from the Lagardère Foundation to create the photo documentary ‘Days of Night – Nights of Day’ about the daily life of the industrial city of Norilsk, located 400 kilometers north of the polar circle, in Siberia.

Elena’s work has been published in National Geographic, Le Monde, Internazionale, Days Japan, A/R magazine, Newsweek Russia, and Ecology and Life.

Awards: World Press Photo 2014; Days Japan Awards and others.

National Geographic, 6 Mois,  Le Monde, Neon, Internazionale, Days Japan, Courier International, Le Temps, Sunday Times, A/R magazine, Newsweek Russia, Ecology and Life.

- World Press Photo 2014, Daily Life, 3d prize stories, project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
- Festival des Boutographies 2014 – Exchange prize and a Public prize, project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
- Days Japan International Photo Journalism Awards 2014 – Special Prize by Juries
- Photographie de l’Annee 2014, Reportage, 2nd prize, project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
-“Runners up” in the 2013 JGS Photography Contest, Forward Thinking Museum, project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
- Finalist of « Invisible Photographer Asia Photos Essay Awards 2013 », photo project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
- Laureate of the Lagardère fund 2012 for photography grant, for the project ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’.
- ‘coup de cœur of ANI’ 2010 (during the ‘Visa pour l’Image’ festival), project ‘Awaiting Movement’
- ‘Europen Emerging Talent’ during the Nikon International Photo Contest 2008-2009
Personal exhibitions
26 November – 30 January 2014 : Interval gallery, Paris, France
25 September – 15 November 2014 : Galleria Studio 44, Genova, Italy
3-30 August 2014 : Arctic Being, Vadso, Norway

Group exhibitions
17 Janvier – 27 Fevrier 2015 : Festival Pluie d’Images, Brest, France
18 October – 23 November 2014 : Festival Fotografico Europeo, Busto Arsizio, Milan, Italy
3 October – 30 November 2014 : Singapore international Photo Festival
1-31 July 2014 : Photo Ireland Festival
5 June – 4 July 2014 : Fotoleggendo, Rome, Italy – ‘Days of Night, Nights of Days’
5 -15 Juin 2014 : Fotofestiwal Lodz, Pologne
17 Mai – 1 Juin 2014 : Festival Les Boutographies, Montpellier, France
February – March 2014: Circulation Photo Festival, espace 104, Paris, France – Days of Night, Nights of Days’
April – Juin 2011: ‘Inter-espaces Urbains’, Galerie Photon, Toulouse, France.
April – May 2011: ‘Le Mythe de la Femme Russe’, cité de l’espace, Toulouse.
December 2010 – Mars 2011: ‘Trans-Asiatique’, Galerie of ANA agency, Paris.
August – September 2010: ‘The dance of the Kalashs’, Visa Off, Perpignan.