Sophie Rothwell

Photo archives have long been essential tools for research in the humanities – in the movement and development of culture and in the memories that define life as it is today. The British Library holds over one million public domain images; whilst Seattle-based photo giant Getty Images boasts over 350 million licenced photographs. Will these archives become obsolete, or take new forms altogether with the rise of digital technology, the evolution of storage systems, cloud sets and data banks? Sophie Rothwell touches on these issues with street photography that manipulates street view. Her process uses empirical methods, exploring the degradation of city streets, as well as juxtapositions and comparisons between history and the present moment. The Archives, pictured here, superimposes one moment in time on top of another, with the image highlighting its own construction and borders.