We had just started to dream again. With much of Australia facing a bout of rather unexpected lockdowns, we are all having to rethink our travel plans, near and far, for the foreseeable future. Escapism is on the mind, and if we can't physically partake, we're searching for inspiration elsewhere. For Berlin-based photographer Sophie Klock, venturing to a rural town in Denmark was just what the photographer needed by way of a creative refresh. Travelling together with three subjects Klock had never met, the group holed up in a home, the sole purpose to create for Rimowa's New Horizons project, and connect. Below, the result of their time spent together, Klock's account of the trip, and what she hopes people will take away from the images.
Tell us a bit about your trip to Denmark, where this was shot.
My friend and collaborator Lea and I felt like getting out of Berlin, somewhere isolated in nature, to stay in a beautiful house for a couple of days with people we would not know yet. We met Emilie, Magnus and Valentin on a Saturday morning in Copenhagen the first time, we had just zoomed with them before once. I felt nervous, it is an unfamiliar situation to go spend a few days with people you haven’t met before. The first car we rented broke down two km in and we had to roll back to get a new one. It took us a few hours driving to warm up, and it wasn’t until the evening, that I felt like we were at ease around each other. Valentin got out a card game called ‘the mind’. And then it became really nice. While we were there, we barely saw anyone else. It was very remote, and it was a place to just exist, to let the day pass, to lay in the grass or in the sand. It was the perfect place to widen your senses, to hear the sound of the sea and the wind rushing through the dunes and to see and to taste and to feel.
What was the best part about the trip?
To get to know each other, we took long walks on the first day, everyone was a bit shy, we showed each other new music, in the evenings we played games and I made dinner for everyone every night, and then we would sit around the fire place in the living room and talk or sometimes we didn’t talk but just stared into the orange.
What do you hope people will take away from these images?
I find it difficult to project other people’s associations with my images, I think that is something very subjective. However, something that made me really happy while being there was that it reminded me how good it feels to get out of your every day and put yourself in new situations that feel unpredictable. I think to me this trip was very much about finding connection to the people around me and a certain ease of just existing and perceiving what surrounds you. Which doesn’t mean to not be aware of the underlying tones. Some of the images aren’t staged at all, some are staged heavily, which is something that I really enjoy doing sometimes, and to me, it also ends up feeling very self-aware sometimes and I mean some images as a joke that of course not everyone gets and I like the ambivalence of that.
It feels as though a common thread in your work is the feeling of intimacy. As a photographer what do you hope people take from your photography?
To me, photography is a way of communicating something that is often a feeling that would feel very complicated to me to express otherwise. I think it’s often a reflection of both how I look at a subject or another person and how they look back at me, and what someone else sees in that is another thing again. To me, relationships of any kind are the most fascinating thing, if intimate or not, and in images sometimes that feeling of intimacy can sometimes appear in a way that I think it hints at something that *could* exist. There is just so many possibilities in encountering others.
What is it like creatively in Berlin now post COVID lockdowns? What are you looking forward to?
It’s good, Bars have just opened up again, exhibitions are open, parties are happening in parks, I’m feeling a little bit overwhelmed right now and just slowly making my way into it honestly but I’m really happy that you can see and work with people again more casually, that definitely makes any creative work much easier. I feel a bit like I have become quite good at finding inspiration without much IRL external input so I am excited to get back into the aspects of Berlin that make me love this city.