Sari Soininen is a Finnish photographer based in Bristol, UK currently studying MA Photography at UWE Bristol. Her artistic practice is inspired by philosophy, mystical experiences and a desire to provide the viewer with alternative ways of seeing reality. Her project Transcendent Country of the Mind explores her encounters with alternative dimensions of reality and perceptions of otherworldly signs around us. It tells the story of a world that lives at the back of our minds.
In her early twenties, Soininen experimented with LSD regularly and excessively, and eventually experienced an extended psychotic episode, which had serious consequences for her but also profoundly changed the way she perceives the world and reality itself. During this time, she abandoned all of her worldly possessions and “confronted the demons of Hell, was shown the wonders of Heaven, travelled through time and space, and peeked behind the curtain of this dimension.” Having now fully recovered from this life-altering experience, her understanding of reality has changed forever. These photographs represent this perspective and offer others similar glimpses of what she found behind the curtain.