5Q2 - Sophie Allerding

On magic and traditions – in our format 5 questions to (5Q2), we talk to the artists of our Instagram takeovers about the work they show, their influences and upcoming plans. In March 2021, we talked to photographer Sophie Allerding.


Sophie is an artist and feminist based in Germany and the Netherlands. In her work she deals a lot with myths, body and identity, relations, and the role and history of women in society. She is motivated by personal questions and experiences and often influenced by her Latin American roots, especially when it comes to a magical way to perceive reality.


FOTOTREFF: Did you encounter a special challenge while working on your project you’re showing?

Sophie Allerding: Yes, the pandemic! My project took partly place in Brazil, where I had some longer stays in the Amazon rainforest in Ribeirinho Villages. Ribeirinhos are a tradtional forest dwellers, they live in villages along the banks of the rivers in the rainforest. They keep the culture of these Myths alive as well as a respectful balance between them and their environment.
During a longer stay I organized a photography workshop. This allowed me to enter into a closer exchange with some of the residents and to open my way of working and my tools for a dialogue. This experience allowed a fusion of different perspectives, which also became research material and inspiration for my work. I planned to repeat it and I also wanted to invite people to be part of my perfomative staging. Unfortunately this has to wait until the pandemic is over.

FT: Is there a photographer or artist who influenced you in a particular way?

SA: There are many and it is changing so much, I am inspired a lot by surrealists, a bit old-school but I take a lot of energy and motivation out of their thinking. A contemporary photographer who I admire and who inspires me is Elena Helfrecht. And who really influenced me a lot are my supervisors Irina Ruppert and Linn Schröder, not necessary visually but as artists who are full of care and love in their practice.

FT: Which (photo-) book should everybody own (or you would like to have)?

SA: I don‘t have a particular one, but I am a big fan of the books published by void.

FT: Can you recommend an exhibition we should go and see right away?

SA Not an exhibition but I can highly recommend the Undisciplining Photography Symposium which will take part end of May, you can have a look on the website if you are interested www.undiscipliningphotography.org

FT: Have you started working on a new project? Any beans to spill?

SA: I started to work on some things which all revolve around the theme of femininity, magic, beliefs and traditions, I will weave them together into my master project.