Speak Out: Flora Borsi
“I visualise invisible feelings in the form of surrealism.”
– Flora Borsi
On the occasion of Women’s History Month, Saatchi Art’s curators spoke with artists about their process, inspiration, and the ways in which their identity as a woman is relevant to their art.
Hungarian photographer Flora Borsi has exhibited in group and solo shows internationally, including at the Saatchi Gallery and Louvre. Her works have been published by CNN, The Guardian. She was the face of Adobe Photoshop in 2014, shortlisted for the Sony World Photography Awards in 2016, and won 1st prize at the National Photography Awards in Hungary.
What does it mean to you to be a woman in art?
For me it means to give birth to something new. Create something that didn’t exist before, but all on my own.
Which female artist inspires you most — past or present — and why?
Annie Leibovitz. She’s been working for decades as a female photographer and did work in a field where only men were commissioned.
What is your advice to a young woman who aspires to be an artist?
Take advantage on sensitivity and emotions. Create something which is real, honest and raw without an excuse.
What are the themes you pursue in your work?
I’m exploring questions of female representation and the relationship between body and self. I manifest invisible feelings and visualise them in the form of surrealism.
Can you walk us through your process? Do you begin with a sketch, or do you just jump in? How long do you spend on one work? How do you know when it is finished?
First I do the brainstorming part, then make little notes & sketch. I always have the image ready in my mind. Then I capture photographs. I’m working with different mediums and mostly I modify them digitally. This process can take up to days, but somehow I always feel it when it’s done. It’s hard to rationalise something which is coming from a subconscious place.
How long do you spend on one work? How do you know when it is finished?
The time of production varies from one piece to another. In general, around five weeks, not counting the time of taking photographs. Some pieces take up to eight weeks. My largest commission to this day took four months.
The work is complete when I see no other way to improve the image. It’s like feng shui. You know when you reach perfect balance and harmony. Then, the work is complete.
If you couldn’t be an artist, what would you do?
I’d be a psychologist or a marketing strategist. Something which is related to people and emotions.