Emilie Inger Camilla Branford
Newcastle Univeristy Fine Art Graduate
Emilie Inger Camilla Branford, born 1998, is a multidisciplinary artist from Kent. She graduated from Newcastle University in 2020 with a First Class BA Honours in Fine Art.
Emilie enjoys creating conceptual artwork that blend artistic disciplines and materials, she creates unique hybrids that are reflective of her own identity.
At university, Emilie explored Jungian 'Shadow Theory' and the human psyche, by creating an alter ego she named Twoshoes.
Twoshoes allowed Emilie to discuss the human experience within her work. She believes that to appreciate the lightness and beauty in life, it is paramount to express the universal darkness of humanity. The resulting artwork was sinister and haunting in nature, yet profound and touching.
During the winter lockdown of 2020, Emilie was inspired to delve back into her childhood memories in order to escape the harsh realities of the restrictions.
This exploration of nostalgia motivated Emilie to expand her investigation of self-portraiture by creating characters that represent aspects of her personality. By taking inspiration from the charmingly relatable animated characters that lived inside her VHS tapes, she creates a universe where she can tackle her own emotional issues and fears without judgement.
Emilie uses these characters as vessels to communicate the issues of a contemporary young person – touching on issues like mental health and substance abuse, but doing so in a way that is humorous and light hearted. She believes that her characters can speak to any individual, since they way they behave & what they are shown to represent, can be interpreted by all & live inside us in one way or another.
The references to pop culture are used as instruments for Emilie’s narrative. For example, the inclusion of Mcdonalds imagery has many meanings. When she was a child, going to get a ‘Happy Meal’ was one of the most exciting things to happen, providing memories of pure joy. However, as an adult and as a result of a difficult relationship with food, the colourful and bombastic presentation of a red and yellow packet ignite more reactions that just a smile and a sigh. The yellow arches, like yellow frowns, symbolise these feelings of addiction and shame that coexist with the cheerful inner child.
There is joy to be found in the darkest places.
There is humour to be found when things don’t feel funny.
Its ok to be sad but to smile in the shadows.
Even within the shadow's reach life is still sunny.