For Dutch-born artist and style photographer Viviane Sassen, it’s not Arnhem or Amsterdam however a village in the far off west of rural Kenya that holds the largest sway over her inventive voice. Sassen, the topic of the newest episode of our flagship collection Photographers in Focus, spent her early years in the East African nation, finding out a lot from its “shiny daylight and darkish shadows.” It is a topic to which she has returned time and again.
Since returning to northern Europe to are living and learn about, Sassen has established herself around the fields of style pictures and artwork, and is way lauded for her stylistic calling-card of geometric shapes and abstracted our bodies. These pictures, seen the veteran shooter in an interview previous this yr, are like “puzzles,” the place she “brings a couple of parts in combination and experiments” whilst all the time taking a look “for that little little bit of magic.”
Contributing continuously to titles together with Dazed and Confused, Pop, and AnOther, Sassen has collaborated on a variety of world campaigns together with the ones for Stella McCartney, Hermès, Miu Miu, and Missoni. And but, in spite of the range of her photographic portfolio, her pictures all the time go back to her earliest recollections of sunshine, form, and shadow, and to the folks and puts of Kenya. Her 2014 photobook Pikin Slee is illustrative of this—a set that without delay referenced the village of her upbringing, which is inhabited by way of the ancestors of former slaves who escaped Dutch rule. It represents a studied exploration of the wonderful thing about on a regular basis, reputedly customary items and preparations—a bowl of grain; a spool of cord in stark monochrome—which might be imbued with intense thriller and symbolic importance.
The similar will also be mentioned of her business pictures, the place sharp contrasts, daring paperwork, and an in depth consideration to the play of shadow and lightweight, have cemented her recognition as one of the main figures in recent style imagery. At the similar time, her pictures—which might be subtly knowledgeable by way of Surrealism—ceaselessly have an unsettling and experimental edge, resulting in the advice of darker topics underlying her ceaselessly colourful compositional worlds.
Sassen’s paintings used to be known in 2015 with the award of a Deutsche Börse Photography Prize, in reaction to Umbra, her exhibition at Nederlands Fotomuseum. She has additionally been the recipient of The Prix de Rome in 2007 and, in 2013, confirmed paintings on the Venice Biennale.