Sophie Clausen

I was born and grew up in Elsinore, Denmark. After travelling the world, I moved to London where I studied Illustration at Chelsea College of Art and went onto to receive a BA (Hons) in Fine Art and History of Art from Goldsmiths College, University of London. I later graduated with an MA in Communication Design from Chelsea College of Art and Design.

In 2009 I spent 3 months as Artist in Residence with The Art Students League of New York, and had subsequent exhibitions of my series of paintings ‘Free Falling’ at Galleria Panza Verde and La Reunion in La Antigua, Guatemala. I was awarded the Vytlacil Scholarship with The Art Students League of New York in 2010.

My career to date has been colourful and varied: In 2004 I was appointed Graphic Designer for Alan Ayckbourn’s theatre, the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough. From 2005 to 2010 I worked as Senior Graphic Designer for the Royal Shakespeare Company, Stratford-upon-Avon. In 2010-2011 I was employed by the Danish Embassy in London as Press and Cultural Officer. From 2011-2013 I worked as an artist and art assistant to Arthur Becker in New York City before moving back to Stratford upon Avon where I have worked as a Creative Programmes Producer for the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust from 2015-2018 and as Exhibitions Officer for the Royal Shakespeare Company from 2018-2019. In 2020 I set up Arts Rising Collective, a Community Interest Company with the aim of getting an arts venue in Stratford upon Avon. I currently also work as Lead Producer for Coventry Artspace and Coventry City of Culture.

Since 2018 I have been a Trustee Board Member of Lifeways Charity in Stratford upon Avon.

I am the founder, editor and designer of The Love, Hope & Peace Journal, an online magazine with contributors and readers from around the world, supported by Amnesty International. It’s published on Issuu.com : https://issuu.com/thelovehopepeacejournal/docs/finalpdf

My first novel Over Dine Øjne – Over Your Eyes – was published in Denmark by Forfatterskabet in November 2019 and has received outstanding reviews: https://www.forfatterskabet.dk/over-dine-oejne/

I have been interviewed for newspaper articles, radio and television by The Stratford Herald, The Guardian, Irish Times, Bloomberg News, Reuters, BBC News, Sky News, Danish TV2 News and Swedish TV4 News in relation to my Brexit Cafe initiative and other social activism.

Past exhibitions:
1998: Solo show in the new library building, opened by Princess Anne,
at Goldsmiths College, London
2001: Solo show at Angel Eye Gallery, Mayfair, London
2003: Group show at the Elsinore Culture Centre, Denmark
2008: Group show at the Civic Hall, Stratford upon Avon
2008: Group show at The Gallery, Stratford upon Avon
2009 (May): Group show at The Art Students League of NY, The Elizabeth Sullivan Gallery, New York
2009 (July): Solo show at Galeria Panza Verde, La Antigua, Guatemala
2009 (August): Solo show at La Reunion, La Antigua, Guatemala
2010 (May): Group show at The Art Students League of NY, The Elizabeth Sullivan Gallery, New York
2010 (October): Group show at The Art Students League of NY, The Elizabeth Sullivan Gallery, New York
2011 (March): Group show at The Art Students League of NY, The Phyllis Harriman Mason Gallery, New York
2012 (April): Joint show at Box Brownie, Stratford upon Avon
2012 (May): Alumni show at The Art Students League of NY, The Elizabeth Sullivan Gallery, New York

Statement:

Colour, movement and narrative is what drives my work.

I paint on canvas or discarded metal, using a variety of materials such as oil, graphite, cloth, paper, iron powder and pigment powder, as I am interested in the rawness of materials and in re-using objects that have already served a functional purpose. I am interested in the transformation of objects, as I see this as part of a natural process, a recycling of times and experiences past. By exploring materials such as these, letting them find their own expression, I also let them find their own stories; like imagination let loose, and I, the painter, doing my best to capture what arises.

Of course, it’s a two-way dynamic. My own fascination with the sky, with the air we breathe, with the earth and the sea, and what it means to be a living person in the midst of these elements, is the foundation of my work. The narrative is weaved in by the invisible forces and voices of the surfaces and materials: lines of a landscape or of the sea, traces of shapes or of subconscious memories, a sensation of falling through space, unable to grasp the vastness of the sky – the dream of being free, and flying high above the ground – all stories about being alive in this world and the pure sensation of it.