My artwork aims to capture and show life at its most vibrant and exciting. The photographs I take encourage people to see the intricacies and beauty beyond the everyday. My artwork is often centered around my immediate environment and cultural identity. I celebrate culture in all its varied forms all over the world. I have photographed Europe and Asia capturing countries and cultures as I experience them. My work encourages viewers to feel awe and joy in the travelers' quest and the rewards that experiencing other cultures can bring whilst developing my own cultural identity through photography.
This photography series is called 'China', it was created during my travels to China. My Dad’s family are from Malaysia but several generations before me they were originally from China. After I became interested in Chinese contemporary art and culture I travelled to China and stayed there for a month and a half. I learnt a lot about Chinese art and cuisine and connected with my family’s roots whilst I was there. I got to experience city life in Nanjing, Beijing and Suzhou and spent time in an ancient inn in the countryside and time in the mountains of the Jiangsu province. This photographic series marks my journey of outsider to insider, I photographed subjects I connected with or things that stood out to me.
La Dolce Fa Niente
This photography series is a medium format photography series that was created whilst I was traveling in Italy called 'La Dolce Fa Niente'. I got to know my family's roots whilst I was there and explored Italian culture. The trip culminated in me visiting my family in a small village outside of Naples called Miranda in the countryside. I also visited and photographed Rome. The title of the series translates to ‘The Sweetness of Doing Nothing’, this is a phrase in Italian life that exemplifies life and in particular country life in Italy to me.
This photographic series is called 'Malaysia'. It was created during my travels in Malaysia whilst I was visiting my family. This was my first trip to Asia and Malaysia and the first time I met my family. During my time there I adjusted to the language, the tropical weather and experienced new cuisine that broadened my knowledge of South East Asian food and culture. Being there stimulated all my senses and I was there for a month and a half. By the end of my travels there I became closer to my family and less of an outsider to Asian and Malaysian culture. This photographic series marks my journey from foreigner to native and how I grew closer to my grandparents and their home, which eventually became my home.
Emma Sywyj has been an artist for 14 years, 5 of those years she was based in London whilst studying photography at the Camberwell College of Arts at the UAL. From there she received a BA Honours in Photography and a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design. She has exhibited her artwork internationally in the US in New York, LA and San Francisco and Athens in Greece and Budapest in Hungary. She has also exhibited nationally in the UK and London several times where she currently lives and works. She also been published in several independent art magazines in the UK and exhibited her video art work in international film festivals around the globe.