ASHA Swillens

Photographer | Digital artist

I am a photographer and digital artist or image maker. My work is greatly influenced by my background in fashion. I studied fashion in The Hague(2012-2014) and in Antwerp (2014-2017).

Through my studies I developed a technique I could call my own whilst designing clothing. I mainly used mixed media and designed garments by making fashion-collages.

In 2019 I finished the project “Oh, but this is typically dutch”. A project that focused on contemporary nationalism and the philosophical question “what does it mean when someone claims something to be typically dutch or an old tradition?” I researched typical dutch clothing, with the curled women’s bonnets as my main inspiration. I used old images to reinvent the “typical” into a modern design.

Since 2020 I focus less on fashion and more on photography. It made me push the boundaries of shaping ideas and lead me to focussing more on the aesthetics of an image and less on the shape of the garments.

I researched a lot of paintings from the 17th century. Specifically looking at the use of lights and shadows, as well as the combination of mostly black and white clothing on a dark background. Those paintings combine a heavy contrast with ‘ton-sur-ton’ tones that is very inspiring to me. I wanted to use these influences to give my work this very specific feel. Work that feels like seeing a memory of a time long gone, whilst being modern and new. 

For inquiries, exhibitions or questions simply contact me!