Laura Klinkenberg | PERSONAL LIGHT Winner
Laura Klinkenberg is the winner of PERSONAL LIGHT, international contemporary photography award by the PhotoPhore (February 2016).
Laura was born in 1992 in Haarlem, the Netherlands. She uses the body with its physical presence as a tool to examine the space between people. Laura’s work consists of performances, sculptures, photography, videos and design.
Laura tells the PhotoPhore about her approach to contest’s theme and to her art, about her practice and dreams.
the PhotoPhore: What is the first image that comes to your mind listening to the word ‘light’? How did the theme of ‘PERSONAL LIGHT’ contest inspire you?
Laura Klinkenberg: If I hear the word ‘light’, I see the image of myself being carried. I feel a big relief and I can let go of everything. The theme ‘PERSONAL LIGHT’ brings up questions about one of my essential needs, the connection that I can experience with the other. In my work Leaf you I translated touch into image: a leaf of gold foil that fits exactly in the palm of the bearer’s hand. When the hand is laid down, the gold foil gradually lets loose and leaves a shining print. Like the endless reverberant echo of the touch between two people – in pure gold.
the PhotoPhore: How did you first approach to art and creative world, and why?
Laura Klinkenberg: From an early age I have been observing people and my surroundings, researching materials and looking for different ways to express myself creatively. I have a great need to create and work with the space. In 2009, when I was 16 years old, I started my studies at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, where I began to research the space between myself and others. For my graduation projects (2015) I focused on how to translate this dynamic into motion.
the PhotoPhore: What are the main themes of your work? Is your art based on a developing personal research, a specific fil rouge?
Laura Klinkenberg: In silence, I observe the space between myself and the other. I strive for contact with the other. To give each other full attention is very valuable and exciting at the same time. For me, this is only possible in one-on-one contact. At the same time, I feel the need to have personal space. I play with the space between people, the social space, which is teeming with meanings, feelings and habits.
One of the most important questions I’m concerned with in my work is: How do I bring the space between myself and others – the interspace – into motion?
the PhotoPhore: Your work ranges from fine arts to design and performance art: how do these different ways of expression influence you and your art?
Laura Klinkenberg: I use the body with its physical presence as a tool to examine the interspace. I aim for intriguing plays, which choreograph the relationships people have with one another. The different media I use help me give shape to my work on a wider scale. In this way, the works can form new relationships with each other. For me this makes the tension stay alive and it creates a space where I can further develop the themes I am working with.
the PhotoPhore: Tell us about your future projects, your dreams.
Laura Klinkenberg: I ask myself what it is to carry and to be carried: how can you completely surrender to another person or an object? I want to give shape to these experiences in new spatial work – sculptures and installations – and involve other people in an active way. In the future I would like to engage in more collaborations with artists from different disciplines.
At this moment I am involved in the research ‘Exploring the world of affordances’ at the studio RAAAF (Rietveld Architecture Art Affordances). In our research ‘End of Sitting’ I work together with the architects, philosophers and scientists who started this project. We are looking for possibilities to invite people to work in a dynamic way – standing, leaning, laying, hanging. We express these ideas using different materials. All these possibilities result in an experimental landscape, where my attention goes to the question of how we relate to each other and our surroundings.
Text © the PhotoPhore. Images courtesy Laura Klinkenberg