Sandra D’Angelo

sandra d'angelo

Born in Italy’s vibrant capital, Sandra D’Angelo currently works as both fine art photographer and musician for the international music industry, including major recording labels such as EMI and Virgin. She has performed and exhibited widely across Europe as well as in New York, Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paolo.

In an age obsessed with capturing images of ourselves and those around us, D’Angelo’s portraits offer the viewer a refreshing burst of visual opulence, less concerned with the idealised beauty of the sitter than in presenting an image charged with a symphonic round capable of bombarding the senses. Positioned specifically within western, middle-class culture and featuring child sitters dressed sometimes in fairytale costume, D’Angelo’s brightly coloured images project their subjects as storytellers leading the viewer to another world. Digitally enhanced and collaged together with photographs taken on her travels, these portraits are manipulated by the artist in fashioning dream-like backdrops with a narrative element.

The musical training she received in Milan clearly influences her stylistic approach, which recognises the temporal impact of line, repetition and pattern and uses these to break up the visual field, adding an almost lyrical quality to the composition. Rhythmic flourishes intricately separated from their architectural foundations dance joyfully across traditionally framed portraits and the recurrent motions of water or a thunderous sky are at times used to add an aural dimension to the work. In several of D’Angelo’s images, kaleidoscopic mirroring subtly disturbs our sense of normality, creating an unsettling, duplicitous scene. Here it’s as though a glitch in the software manufacturing these futuristic, utopian settings, imagined through the eyes of a child, betrays their hyperreality, revealing them to be simulated fantasy. The zipped-up saturation and panoramic proportions of these intensely saccharin images harks back to the glorious technicolour, breathtaking cinemascope and stereophonic sound of Hollywood’s early motion pictures and lends D’Angelo’s landscapes their cinematic look, but all the while they remain essentially, beautifully intimate portraits of children.