The Gallery at Queen’s Park presents:
Samantha Harrison – “Recreations of Myth & Spirit”
Exhibition Dates: Sept.7 – 25th, 2022
Gallery Hours: Wednesday – Sunday, 10:00am – 2:00pm
These eight oil paintings are part of an ongoing series, titled Recreations of Myth and Spirit. This series seeks to recreate figures of mythological and religious origin as modern people. In creating each painting the objective is to match each model to different figures based on a moment of perceived similarity, while also deliberately mismatching the models in other aspects of their visual characteristics, such as their perceived racial identity, or biological sex. In doing this an attempt is made to draw focus upon the idea that mythological and spiritual figures are deeply connected to – and inspired by – various aspects of the human condition, even the mundane. These paintings serve as both recreations and re-creations – that is, they represent both newer interpretations of older stories, just as much as they represent a kind of play-acting between friends, through which each model searches for themselves within the character that has been given to them. With this the viewer is hopefully encouraged to identify with these figures – as well as with the individuals acting as them – and by extension, engage with the stories surrounding them without feelings of exclusion.
Samantha Harrison is a recent graduate of Emily Carr University of Art + Design, with a BFA majoring in painting. Her work consists primarily of oil paintings featuring traditional still-lives, or the human figure, painted in a Classical Realist, or Photorealist style. She is inspired by the concept of perfection, and its correlations with definitions of goodness and virtue, however controversial these correlations may sometimes be. Painting for her is about translation. The translation of images through the filter of sight and mind, and the ultimately imperfect recording that is obtained in a painting, regardless of any diligent attempt to transcribe the images accurately. These minor deviations from the truth of sight hint at the limitation of human ability, aiming to make the viewer wonder exactly what it means to pursue a perfect image, and by extension to seek to define goodness and correctness – despite our obvious shortcomings and inability to be free of moral contradiction. Pursuing and expanding on these ideas in her work is something she is continually working toward, in both style and subject matter.
For more information: Website: sharrison.me Instagram: @samanthas.painting