s o n y a   i w a s i u k

Artist Statement

Survival and Hope

 

I document pivotal moments or seemingly insignificant snapshots of the ordinary revealing profound narratives of life both present and past.

 

My work is inspired by both the stories of my childhood and stories I have collected as an adult. Some I know intimately, others have been entrusted to me, and particular intriguing ones, I have investigated. Inspiration also comes from simply wandering through my world, surveying people, situations, objects and landscapes.

 

Trying to grasp and then throw light on the incomprehensible; capturing the stories of our world and its inhabitants, is essential for me. We are surrounded at once by intense beauty and vitality and yet, at times, darkness and fragility take over. It’s hard to fathom the implausible hardships people and the earth endure, but more unbelievable to me is hope and the will to survive. They persist. They persist.

 

Though at times the figure is my focus, I am also drawn to abandoned places and buildings because they too speak of people. Disconcerted characters and lonely entities documented within my mixed media paintings, sculptures and translucent hangings, are partially exposed and brought back to being. I often intensely research the histories of people, places and particular events and by revealing the past I have realized how strongly it speaks of the present. I progressively explore and experiment with different materials and methods of rendering and presenting these portrayals.

 

My hope is that I will engage people and open connections to these stories of strangers initiating empathy, consideration and maybe even introspection.