The Champion Photoopens IMAGE file

The Commemorative Posters are available at:

Office of Cultural Affairs

300 S. Providence Road (M-F, 8 to noon & 1 to 5)

The Champion by Svetlana Grobman

2017 Commemorative Poster

About the Artist – Svetlana Grobman

Svetlana Grobman is a Jewish immigrant from Russia who was born in Moscow in 1951 and who moved to Columbia, MO, in 1990. While living in Russia, Grobman was an engineer and an editor for the Soviet Encyclopedia. In Columbia, she received a Library Science degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia, and she worked at the Columbia Public Library for 26 years. Now retired, Grobman is a freelance writer and photographer. In 2015, she published her memoir, “The Education of a Traitor,” and in 2016, she won a first place at the Rural Missouri Snapshot Contest.

Grobman is a member of the Columbia Art League, where she exhibits regularly. She lives with her husband, an emeritus professor of English. Her daughter and two charming grandchildren, age 9 and 12, live in London, UK.

About the Artwork – “The Champion”

“Having come from a big city, I found life in Columbia very different. There were no high skyscrapers around, few bus lines, and even fewer museums and concert halls. Yet here, I found something that I never before realized I was missing. I found nature. There were birds and squirrels in my yard, deer crossed our street, and trees and bushes grew under my window. Some of the plants were the same as in my home country, but many were different, with different bark and smells, and even different ways of blooming. It was incredible!

Later, my husband gave me a camera, and I began documenting life around me with photos. It was like writing a diary, the only difference being that instead of words I used images. Photography gave me a way of expressing my feelings and also showing the beauty of nature to others.

As for my photo, many Columbians know Missouri’s oldest and largest burr oak near McBain. Some admire if from the Katy Trial, some drive to it along Burr Oak Road, especially in the summer when the tree is covered with lush greenery. Yet early in the spring, when the oak stands dark and bare, small purple henbit wildflowers sprout all around it and cover the ground with a colorful blanket as a symbol of spring and the eternal conflict between old and new.” – Svetlana Grobman

Poster dimensions: 28″ x 22″