Sharon Sampson explores the cycle of life in her new exhibition at Halifax Art
Posted on July 6, 2017.
Sharon Sampson, Passages of Light, Mixed media on canvas (98cm x 60cm)
Moved by a series of incidents surrounding a well-nigh 100 year old oak tree in the artist's garden, Sharon Sampson explores the cycle of life - growth, maturity, decay, and most significantly, renewal and rejuvenation occurring in nature, strongly symbolizing the sacredness and divineness of the universe. The exhibition opens Wednesday 12 July 2017 at Halifax Art in Johannesburg.
Placing relevance on circular forms in nature, Sampson is deeply respectful that the circle, or wheel, represents birth, survival and death across multiple religions and philosophies. Central to this consideration is the process of return; even in decomposition and death, a process of giving back, providing life to another, and ultimately to earth itself, highlights the infinite and indestructible nature of energy.
Sampson reminds us of the significance of trees as part of nature, exploring their ebb and flow, their simultaneous strength and fragility, masculinity and femininity, allowing the viewer to consider the tree, and nature, at its very cellular level. This is explored through a series of works tending toward abstraction, an exploratory direction for the artist, the enjoyment of this evident in the understated vibrancy of the work.
Sharon Sampson, Glancing Back, Oil on canvas (60cm x 90cm)
The circle whilst simultaneously simple and complex, suggests parallels on a human level. Conspicuous in their prolific presence, Sampson infers a link to our arboreal partners with whom we share this planet. The viewer may draw their own conclusions regarding our responsibilities regarding the return and restoration of positive human energy into nature, the earth and the universe.
Works are presented as oil paintings, and prints - incorporating a variety of techniques including monotypes, collagraphs, carborundum, photopolymer and linocuts. The artworks range from impressonistic to the abstract. Some prints have been created using arboreal components, adding further depth to the central concept of renewal and rejuvenation.
About the Artist
Sampson is a figurative artist with deep roots in the world of advertising, art direction, and design. She graduated in Fine Art and Graphic Design, Natal Technikon, and studied under, amongst others, Andrew Verster.
Specialising in oil painting and printmaking, Sampson has participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and her work is held both locally and abroad. As an educator, Sharon commands a reputation of excellence through her printmaking studio in Illovo, Johannesburg through which numerous South African artists have emerged and grown.
Sampson is the co-founder of FAP – The South African Fine Art Print Fair. FAP was the first national exhibition of its kind, dedicated solely to print. The inaugural exhibition was held in Johannesburg in October 2015 and was highly acclaimed. The second Fair will be held at the end of October 2017.