Asya Reznikov was born in Russia in 1973, and immigrated to the United States with her family when she was a young child. She received her M.A. and B.F.A. from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, and an M.F.A. from Hunter College, City University of New York. She also studied at Universitat der Kunst, Berlin; University of Wolvenhampton, England and Rochester Institute of Technology, New York.
Since the inception of her art making, the themes of travel, language, identity in different cultures as foreigner and traveler, immigration, emigration, and otherness have been her focus.
She says: “Much of my interest in languages and cultures has to do with my personal cultural upbringing. Coming to the United States as a political refugee when I was a child has made me particularly aware of my cultural identity. Being raised in one culture at home, but surrounded by another culture outside created a sensitivity to languages, culture and identity.”
As an adult, Reznikov has become an inveterate traveler—moving from and through different cultures by choice, in contrast to her move at age five—and an insatiable recorder of what she sees. She travels with her cameras, still and video, and captures images from around the world of cities, transit systems, buses, planes, trains, people, buildings, and monuments
“Virgin with Suitcase” was inspired by visits to many European museums. Surrounded by history and art history, Reznikov created a vertical video contained within an old master-like gold leaf frame of herself as a contemporary “Venus” figure. In the center of the screen is a suitcase. As the artist rotates in one direction, she gets dressed, as she rotates in the other she gets undressed. Behind her are 360-degree views of cities that melt into one another.