SOPHIE DE-ROE

Isolation. Alienation. Loneliness. These three terms can mean so many things to so many people, but what do they look like? This project has sought to explore the relationship between a mother and her physical surroundings; that a woman can be surrounded by her family members and children for most of the day and yet still feel an overwhelming sense of being alone is a concept that has intrigued me since becoming a parent.  


Initially looking into this relationship, the earlier works were influenced by artists such as Gregory Crewdson and Jeff Wall, focusing on the constructed image as a way of showing this alienation from the world outside – a view through a window showing the tangible world going past just within reach and yet still so far away as the central subject remains trapped in isolation.  


As the work progressed, I was inspired by the works of Gursky to show the relationship between man and his environment; and it was during the outbreak of Covid-19 that I produced the final piece of carefully constructed imagery – an empty living room with the view to the outside world through the large 6ft windows within my own apartment. This then became crucial to the theme of my project; this view was one that seen by nearly every citizen up and down the country for weeks on end as we faced lockdown measures imposed by the government in an attempt to stop the disease and save lives. The absence of any subject within the frame becomes the subject itself - the vast empty space seemingly silent and still means that the viewer must find them self within that space of isolation and loneliness; they must become part of the picture in order to observe its contents. The isolation quite literal, the alienation tangible and loud within silent walls, and the loneliness crippling and unrelenting. 

The piece above was originally conceived to be a photoshopped composite as the three images above were. however, due to the uk lockdown during the coronavirus outbreak in 2020, my university centre closed and i had no access to a full frame camera or the 20mm prime lens i originally planned to use to create the piece. I had no laptop at the time and no access therefore to lightroom or photoshop. i decided to make the image anyway, and hand crafted this piece by layering 29 separate exposures to create a cubist representational image of isolation from a living room and mounted it on a mirror which reflects the view as it is seen in the image. the vew is not possible from a single set of eyes, suggesting there are two people in the room looking out, and the resulting image is the combined view point of two people standing two meters apart.

Once I had photoshop & lightroom back up and running i decided to create this piece; just for fun ;) Our "isolation party".

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