Kevin Sampson blog post
I have been a gallery artist with Cavin-Morris Gallery in New York for over 24 years, yet I still consider myself a community-based artist. I am also a retired police detective and police composite sketch-artist with over 1,000 sketches to my credit– this has afforded me a wonderful sense of discipline and order with a unique perspective on the human condition.
My work is found object assemblage that I construct by collecting materials found throughout my community. I meet some of the most amazing people as I travel the streets of Newark looking for objects that others have discarded. My community and the stories they tell of their lives is a continued inspiration to my work and me. I believe that found objects hold the residual memory of their previous owners. This allows my creations to take on a life force of their own, powered by these collective dreams and memories.
I have been making work professionally for over 30 years and constructing boats/vessels for over twenty years. I have taught and worked with communities all over the country, as well as being slated to construct a thirty-five foot boat during the 2011 Venice Biennale (American Folk Art Museum Show was canceled one week before departure).
“Arc of Renewal”
When selecting a title for this installation I immediately thought of spiritual energy, which led me to think about an electrical arc, which can form a luminous bridge over the gap that lies between two electrodes. Thus the title “Arc of Renewal” describes an installation which will seek to form a spiritual and/or emotional bridge, between prayer, art and remembrance. I intend on creating an emotional call and response between the viewer and this installation. Spiritual restoration and renewal will be a recurring theme.