In Wide Open, Solenne Spitalier creates a world that is familiar yet disorientating. Examining themes of longing, touch, and care, her quiet images amplify and unravel mundane moments that become a site for healing and intimacy. Memory, trauma, and reconstruction of childhood have informed her approach to making these photographs. She captures the disillusionment with what is expected and what is given, and the self-destructive tendencies that hold us back from accepting care.
The emotional and physical are intertwined to create a potent search for freedom. A recurring glow and warm colors are juxtaposed with flatter lighting and cooler tones. They work together to create a tension between moments of contact and moments of isolation.
Solenne Spitalier (London 1997) is a French and American photographer based between New York and Paris. She received a BA from Wesleyan University (CT) in May 2020 with a double major in Sociology and Studio Art (concentrating in photography). Her senior photography thesis Wide Open received High Honors from the Studio Art department. She is interested in magnifying mundane moments that may appear simple at first, but on closer inspection are telling of more complex narratives that reference themes such as reconstruction of childhood, intimacy and isolation.
Her work has been featured in Der Greif, Booooooom, Self Publish Be Happy, C41 Magazine, Float Magazine, and Phases Magazine. She has also been selected for Rotterdam Photo Festival, shortlisted for Belfast Photo Festival, and selected for FotoFilmic JRNL 9 Summer 2021 Issue by guest editor Mariama Attah.