Self-portrait: isolation

Freya Sackville West, Self-portrait: isolation, 2016

Self-portrait: isolation is a melancholic exploration of myself, concerned with conveying my feelings of emotional instability and emptiness. The sculpture is set in a wooded environment, creating a sensation of abandonment and seclusion.


The shape of the form is based on the human figure, yet it is somewhat distorted. Although the viewer can only connect on an emotional level to the sculpture to a certain extent, he or she can identify with the melancholic tone expressed by the shape of the sculpture – the bowed head in particular.


Using the same sculpture, my photographic series, Time records the way in which the shifting light can have an impact on the mood of the sculpture. The shifting light is reflected differently off the surface of the sculpture and, to me, this gives each photo almost an individual identity. For example, the soft light and reflection in the fifth photograph gives the sculpture a subdued look, perhaps indicating the more calming effects of nature, whereas the more sombre light in the fourth photo gives the whole image a more ominous feel. Furthermore, the photograph with the frozen sculpture, covered in snow, could suggest an emotional numbness.


Although the trees are a lot taller than the sculpture and could be seen as overshadowing the sculpture, highlighting how insignificant humans are in relation to nature, to me, the trees offer protection and are somewhat comforting. Furthermore, as the series progresses, one can see the gathering of the pine needles in the lap of the sculpture. To me, this raises the question of whether the sculpture is being incorporated into nature, or rather nature is taking over?

Freya Sackville West, Time, 2016



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