Meet the team

Founder / Director

ALISSA ORDABAI

Alissa Ordabai studied history of the Russian avant-garde at the Courtauld Institute of Art before graduating with a law degree from the University of London. She began her career at USAID assisting Mission Director for Central Asia Craig G. Buck during his negotiations with local governments to facilitate post-soviet transition and traveled to war zones to expedite humanitarian relief. She later coordinated programs at ARD / Checchi Law Reform Project in Central Asia sponsored by the U.S. government and the United Nations, and supported WHO and Centers for Disease Control to drive healthcare reform in the region. As a researcher and investigative analyst she consults U.S. law practices and geopolitical intelligence firms (most recently — Ergo New York) on topics ranging from intellectual property, to domestic policy, to global media dynamics. Providing legal work and research for Vladimir Bukovsky's 2019 book Judgement in Moscow became one of her most memorable recent highlights. Contact: alissa@soviethistorylessons.com.

Consultant /  French Language Translator

DR.ZAHRA TAVASSOLI ZEA

Dr. Zahra Tavassoli Zea is an art historian and the author of Balzac Reframed: The Classical and Modern Faces of Éric Rohmer and Jacques Rivette (Palgrave, 2019). She obtained her Ph.D. in History and Philosophy of Art from the University of Kent, with specialisation in film adaptations of 19th-century literary sources. In parallel with her experience as a researcher and university teacher, Zahra trained as a professional translator in 2017 and collaborated with a wide range of sectors, clients and companies:  scholars, publishing houses, educational organisations, NGOs, private businesses and government agencies. Currently, she works as Editor-in-Chief of Tide magazine, an independent French journal focusing on contemporary art and fashion. She is also a regular guest on the fortnightly podcast "Spot on, Doc", which offers free lectures and conversations on film, media and art history to the general public. To commission Zahra, contact zahratavassolizea@gmail.com.

Researcher / German Language Translator

JACK BRADY

Jack Brady is a first-class graduate of Cambridge University, where he specialised in modern German thought. During his studies, Jack received four prizes for academic excellence, and was named Corpus Christi Scholar and Boorman Scholar. He has been translating from German into English for five years and enjoys working with a broad range of texts. Currently, Jack is researching 'revolution' in nineteenth-century German literature. His favourite book is Ungeduld des Herzens by Stefan Zweig. To commission Jack, contact jbrady.translates@gmail.com.

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ARTHUR BEARD

Researcher / French Language Translator

Arthur is currently studying for a Masters in Conference Interpreting (English, French and Russian) at the University of Geneva. Previously, he completed a BA in Modern and Medieval Languages (Russian and German) at the University of Cambridge. Arthur has conducted research on various aspects of Russian-language culture, with a particular interest for Soviet cinema and contemporary Russian rap. He is writing his Master’s thesis on the memoirs of Soviet State interpreters who interpreted for Khrushchev, Brezhnev and Gorbachev. To commission Arthur, contact beard.arthur@gmail.com.

TEODOR NICULA-GOLOVEI

Researcher / Romanian Language Translator 

Teodor Nicula-Golovei is a graduate of the University of Cambridge, where he studied Modern and Medieval Languages (German and Spanish), with a focus on contemporary German history. During his time at Cambridge, Teodor received academic praise from his supervisors and was named Tiarks Junior Scholar. He has been translating between Romanian, English, German, and Spanish for 5 years, in both academic and professional settings. He is currently pursuing the Master of Advanced International Studies at the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. To commission Teodor, contact teodorng@gmail.com.

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PIOTR SADOWSKI

Polish Language Translator

Piotr Sadowski is a London-based Polish language translator and a holder of a Master's degree in Applied Linguistics. To commission Piotr, visit http://www.pandmtranslators.eu.

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MARIA LAZEBRA

Illustrator

Maria Lazebra is a Ukrainian visual artist who creates unique hand-drawn illustrations and carefully crafted body art designs. For custom artwork, contact Maria through her Instagram (@lazebraart) or email: lazebraart@gmail.com.

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ASKER MURSALIEV

Freelance Illustrator

Asker Mursaliev is an art college graduate (department of easel painting) based in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. A 2D and 3D computer graphics professional, in his spare time he enjoys silkscreen printing and creates his own comics. Instagram: @hitruk87. To commission Asker, contact hitruk87@gmail.com.  

CARINA REYTBLAT

Designer / Illustrator

Carina Reytblat graduated from art school specialising in theatre set design. She has been working as a 3D and concept artist in the gaming industry, and was simultaneously illustrating books. Eventually her passion for illustration won out and she decided to dedicate her whole time to illustrating. She has illustrated a wide range of books, collaborating with authors in a variety of genres.  

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CHRISTINE LALOT

Designer / Illustrator