elena kovylina was born in moscow in 1971. she works internationally in the diapason of performance, video and media art as well as art-in-context projects. from 1988 to 1991 she studied classical painting at art school in moscow and studied at the moscow surikov art academy for two years (1993-1995). after moving to switzerland in 1996, kovylina attended f+f art school in zurich for media art studies. in 1998, she returned in moscow to spend one year at the institute for contemporary art. in 2001 she moved to berlin and completed her higher education at udk (berlin art academy) under professor rebecca horn. in she 2001 received a travel grant from the goethe institute to participate at a new media art seminar (karlsruhe, saint-augustin, linz, berlin and cologne). in 2002 she founded theater of homeless youth, where she directed experimental storytelling pieces with amateur actors, mainly street children. since 2002, she has won awards and received grants for a wide range of artistic residencies, including, academy schloss solitude, stutgart, 2002; kuenstlerhaus boswil, switzerland, 2004; kuenstlerhaus schoeppingen, germany, 2004; mak schindler house, art and architecture residence program, la, usa, 2005; kuenstlerhaus schlieren, zurich, 2006; centre internationale des recollets, paris, 2007; innovation prize, russian state award, 2007; cite internationale des arts, paris 2007. in 2008 she led two workshops, at lyon art academy as well as helsinki academy of fine arts, in february and november, respectively. from june to september 2009 she was the analix-forever institute artist-in-residence in geneve. she currently lives in moscow.