Sy­delle Wil­low Smith

Soft Walls

The Hand of Fashion - - ART IS AT HAND -

Sy­delle Wil­low Smith is a free­lance pho­tog­ra­pher/ film­maker born in Jo­han­nes­burg and based in Cape Town, South Africa. She is cur­rently com­plet­ing her MSc in African Stud­ies at Ox­ford Univer­sity through St Antony’s Col­lege. She was was men­tored by Dave South­wood and is the 2013 Gisèle Wulf­sohn Men­tor­ship re­cip­i­ent.

Soft Walls seeks to deal with con­vivial re­la­tion­ships be­tween mi­grated African na­tion­als and South Africans; re­veal­ing the sub­tle ways in which in­di­vid­u­als make sense of their ex­pe­ri­ences; form­ing re­la­tion­ships and bonds that can chal­lenge dom­i­nant per­cep­tions and prej­u­dices and cel­e­brate dif­fer­ence. Sy­delle Wil­low Smith’s pho­tog­ra­phy nar­ra­tive deals with the ten­sions be­tween cer­tainty & un­cer­tainty and con­vic­tion & dis­tance. Soft Walls is a con­tem­pla­tive and ten­ta­tive re­sponse to Smith’s in­ter­ac­tions with and un­der­stand­ing of her sub­jects that lay­ers the city, the pri­vate, and pub­lic, framed by ques­tions of be­long­ing and as­sim­i­la­tion.

“Chas­ing shad­ows and cu­riosi­ties and re­mem­ber­ing and for­get­ting to re­spect my el­ders, stand­ing on the shoul­ders of gi­ants try­ing to get my own lens on the world.”

0387. “Be­cause you in a for­eign land doesn’t mean you can’t make your shit hap­pen.”

0401. Alzaan­dre’s mom’s house in Grabouw

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