Blossoming from frustrations in her past life as a photographer, Sophie Wright is concerned with our relationship to the images and objects that surround us in everyday life. Suspicious of the slippery behaviour of the ‘still’ image, she investigates the ways we tame time, document our experiences and make sense of the world, looking at how we look, in the hope of journeying beyond a fleeting first glance. A miniature gesture that can lead to mountains.
Taking care of the stuff in our eye-line, her fascination lies in the overlooked images, objects and other living things that we share our habitats with, speculating on the flurry of invisible actions that happen around them and the layers that lie beneath their surface. Because while an image may be fixed, its meaning isn’t. What are the fragments that occupy our surroundings? How do they relate to the environment they live in? How do things gain and lose meaning? How can we recollect, renew, recycle our visual waste? What stories emerge? And from which perspective? Why does it matter?
In this research, motion becomes a mode of exploration. In a bid to challenge passive ways of looking, Sophie is interested in developing DIY forms at the interstice of photography and cinema; sensorial environments that allow the contradictions, possibilities and temporalities of an image to play out; experiences that waver between stillness and motion, making sense and sensing, past and present, truth(s) and illusion, the perspective of people and things, order and disorder.
Her current project A Study on Baltic Amber puts a photograph of her great aunt on the top of Mont Blanc from her Polish family archive into dialogue with an amber lamp. Both materials that trap time and motion. From these small starting points, several unwieldy experiences have bloomed across time 1 and space: a sprawling collection whose main quality is ambiguity, a short fiction film Nie Było Nas Był Las that zooms in on the material and the mutating archive of In Vetta, that zooms out into a mess of many voices and ascents, made in collaboration with artist Giorgia Piffaretti.
- Master of Film
Sophie Wright is a British filmmaker and writer, based in Amsterdam. She has worked in many different roles in the photography world as a writer, editor, curator and creative producer. She was previously editor of Unseen Magazine, a publication dedicated to contemporary photography, and writes regularly for the British Journal of Photography amongst other publications. Sophie’s work grows out of a murky crevice that exists somewhere between photography and cinema, occupying a dimly-lit space of possibility. Fed up with the common untruth that the photograph is static and complete, resistant to the passage of time, she makes still things ‘move’ creating a physical space for their contradictions and temporalities to play out. Experimenting with form through tactile publications, sensory films and performances, including collaborations with artist Giorgia Piffaretti, she invites us into a place of in-betweens and unwieldy stories, where our lazy ways of looking are challenged.