Sophy Hollington’s latest commission from The New York Times, the cover of its Book Review, sees her take on complex, dystopian themes with skill that only comes with lots of practise. Not being one to cut corners, most of Sophy’s commercial work takes the form of relief prints, created using the lengthy process of lino-cutting. “I love the finality and physicality of slicing in to a fresh sheet of lino. It’s impossible to make a piece of work that looks apologetic”; she says. “Lino is un-compromising as a medium, it helps to practise and get really good at representing certain elements. It’s almost like a tool-kit, which, when woven together in different combinations, can spin many a yarn and look compositionally very juicy.”
Ghouls, plane crashes, animated gravestones and the apocalypse have long been stalwarts of her work, as we saw in our last piece on her prints, band artwork and editorial commissions back in early 2015. Sophy says: “I’ve been subliminally obsessed with monuments and obelisks since a university project required I visit three of London’s largest cemeteries. Other recurring themes include asteroids, apocalyptic landscapes and automobiles. I enjoy sending up my fears, either dressing them up in garish colours or stripping them back to their elements when I’m working in lino.”
Inspired by the likes of Paul Nash, Eduardo Paolozzi and Milton Glaser, Sophy’s personal practice runs from the serious to the satirical with ease. From trying to find visual resolution for the conflicts between modern life and ancient spirituality, to fan art and anthropomorphic burgers, she has an equal appreciation for, and ability to tackle both the most complex and simple pleasures.
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