Sophie Wake is a contemporary British artist, working from her studio in Brighton on the South coast of England.
Sophie graduated from Brighton University, with a BA Hons in Graphic Design & Illustration and worked for more than twenty years as a successful freelance illustrator. Today, her fine art practice responds to the rhythms of meditation that fill her life as a Buddhist practitioner. Her paintings blend delight, humour and profound reflection, celebrating the pure, unfiltered joy of experiencing life in the present.
Sophie’s animal portraits and candid portrayals of the female form are characterised by a tender and intimate aesthetic. Powerfully expressive, her paintings strip away layers of self-awareness, reaching inward to capture the beauty of raw emotion.
Sophie works from her studio in Brighton, where she channels her imagination through an intimately physical creative process. Guided by direct somatic experience, her works are instinctive, each one an automatic process of deep self enquiry. Every piece is the product of a connection between the painter and her canvas, each brushstroke bearing the trace of human creativity and feeling. Working with oil on canvas or gouache on paper, Sophie’s paintings are suffused with a liminal quality, a sense of in-betweenness that reflects on the intangible and revels in small mysteries.
Her recent series ‘Moon Dancer’ responds to Sophie’s spiritual practice. The paintings depict women as divine icons, who dance uninhibited under the light of the moon, rejoicing in their liberation, their inner beauty, and their shining wisdom. More recently, she has been working on a series of vase paintings inspired by the Bloomsbury collection of arts and crafts at Charleston Farmhouse in Sussex. The influence of Shamanism, African rock art, Ancient clay models, and Greek pottery can be felt throughout the collection, which celebrates the power of storytelling and raw human emotion in these simple and authentic forms.
Sophie’s inimitable and instantly recognisable style has earned her numerous prestigious art awards and accolades in recent years. In 2016 She took part in Brighton’s Artists Open House, a cornerstone of the Brighton festival and, in 2017, she was shortlisted for 3 Artists Open House Awards, winning Best Newcomer. In 2018, Sophie’s painting HERD was selected for the Royal Academy’s 250th Summer Exhibition, where it appeared in Grayson Perry’s hand-curated Yellow Room. In 2019 she won Best Artists Open House, Brighton, and was commended for the Sol Design ‘Creative Celebration’ award.
Larger scale projects and collaborations welcomed, commissions and bespoke prints available on request.
Studio appointments are also available at request. Please feel free to get in touch with any questions.