With her Sony Grant, Alys Tomlinson has created Vera, a black & white series which complements her award-winning body of work Ex-Voto.
Here she uses film and photography to tell the story of a Belarusian nun. Living in a rural convent, Vera has an intense and spiritual connection with the wild horses she looks after on the convent's farm. Other duties include teaching vulnerable men and women (including drug addicts, ex-convicts, domestic abuse survivors and the homeless) new skills, to help them recuperate and find purpose in life. Influenced by Polish and Russian filmmakers, Tomlinson intimately explores Vera's story using personal accounts and drawing on history, tradition and the power of faith.
"The Sony Grant enabled me to travel to Belarus to document life inside a convent with Sr. Vera (featured in my series 'Ex-Voto'). It was a fascinating experience and I was given access to a world often hidden from view. The Grant has given me freedom to experiment with digital and moving image, allowing me to develop my practice and challenge myself creatively." - Alys Tomlinson
Since being awarded Photographer of the Year in the 2018 Sony World Photography Awards, British fine art photographer Alys Tomlinson has been celebrated across the industry. In the past 12 months she has collaborated with leading book publisher GOST and is represented by the prestigious London gallery HackelBury Fine Art.