Samantha Wall: Inheritance

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Samantha Wall: Inheritance

March 2018 - May 2018

Portraits record, memorialize, and elevate the individuals they represent. They have the power to act as portals to reveal hidden truths or operate as mirrors for self-reflection. They are proof of presence, immortalizing the stories of those represented. In Inheritance I’m working from images of the women in my family and positioning them as protagonists within our collective narrative. By weaving our stories with elements from Korean tradition and Classical myth, I’m sharing my hybrid perspective as a woman of color and immigrant.

For the collaborative portion of our exhibition, students were asked to work from photographs of people they care for. They chose images of family members, civil rights leaders, and celebrities. The selected photograph was then transferred onto a sheet of film and the students used a combination of water, alcohol, and ink to render the portraits through drops and washes. These portraits slowed down the process of looking and drawing, allowing the students to experiment with portraiture, representation, and drawing materials.

Samantha Wall graduated with an MFA in Visual Studies in 2011 from the Pacific Northwest College of Art. Originally from Seoul, South Korea, Wall’s images explore identity through the push and pull of cultural diaspora and human interconnectedness. Her monochromatic figure drawings feature meticulously drawn women who embody Wall’s interest in navigating multicultural experiences. Over the last few years Wall has shown in multiple exhibitions throughout the Northwest, as well as several international exhibitions. She is the recipient of awards and grants from organizations including the Oregon Arts Commission; Oregon’s Regional Arts & Culture Council; The Ford Family Foundation; The Hallie Ford Foundation, and The Joan Mitchell Foundation. Most recently, she is the winner of Portland Art Museum’s 2016 Contemporary Northwest Art Awards Arlene Schnitzer Prize. 

Photos courtesy of Anke Schuettler