Our second online exhibition titled “A Sense of Place” is about an architectural site, a house, a sacred site or any structure that we would like to honor as an artwork. We think this is relevant to the current times since many places nowadays belong to a distant past as we aren’t able to visit them.
““We often preserve the memory of an indefinable charm of these (places)” – Georges Perec.”
Wish I Was Here (memory studies)
inkjet printed silk organza
4″ x 6 “
My sense of place piece was inspired by the Biltmore Estate. Located in my hometown of Asheville North Carolina, this has been a place that I have visited frequently throughout the entirety of my life. Though I have changed immensely over time, the estate and my tender fondness for it has remained the same. These studies of “memories” reflect the images burned into my mind of this place. If I close my eyes, I can visualize the space but the details remain vague. They are dreamlike and ethereal, yet murky and blurred by the passage of time.
The Lightness of a Child, Being
7″ x 10″ (not including the wooden dowel)
Fibers (linen, sheep and alpaca wool, cotton, hemp, handspun tassar silk), wooden beads, shells
This piece captures the delightful contentedness that I experienced in the backyard of my childhood home on a breezy summer day. I lay tinkering in the grass next to my napping baby sister and the wind chime sings its gentle melody. I am surrounded by all that is good and wholesome, held by the blanketing summer air.
36” x 30”
Acrylic on Canvas
This piece began as an intuitive exploration of shape and color. As figures emerged in the layers, I recalled wandering in nature. The joy of exploring tributaries and mountain-scapes with childlike wonder. The place in this piece lacks a latitude and longitude, but evokes memories of travels near and far. It kindles the embodied looseness of following an impulse down a stream.
Sam Sokyo Randall
Variable dimensions, digital print or c-print, 2021
I began renting a studio at House of Serein in the summer of 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic. It became a true refuge for me, a warm, beautiful, and nourishing place with an inspiring, creative community where I could explore my life as an artist once again. It was also very healing and supportive during this time of intensive isolation to make art with ink, brush and paper and to reconnect my inside sense of self with my outside expression.
To communicate this, I wanted to share the sensation of both the exterior of the yellow house and the enormous tree that shelters it under the Colorado sky and the interior of my studio which had become a nest for my creative activity. I drew upon David Hockney’s photographic collages, often called “joiners,” which capture his experience of a place unfolding in space and time through the layering of multiple images. With modern technology available today, I used a digital photographic application that spirals an image onto itself algorithmically. The result is a series of images that express my felt experience of the externally expanding vessel for artistic life that is the House of Serein and the dynamic internal landscape of my studio and creative energy within.
Except the Skies Nothing is the Same
4″ x 8 ” Genuine gold leaf, gesso board, ink, oil painting
“Except the skies nothing is the same”, said my daughter after we passed through a few towns in Morocco in January, 2017. It was absolutely different from any other place we had seen. I felt like I could easily get lost without shame in the medieval labyrinth of Meknes. My piece is about Heri es-Souani, a stables for Royal Horses, in this thousand year old town. Its thick walls is now surrounded by an overgrown vegetation where kittens stroll around. Through the many archways, one can see the faraway meadows. In “Except the skies nothing is the same” I depicted the horses that once occupied the space through one of the archways.
Our Inner Worlds
This could be any flaky paint chip, but I know the exact wall it is from and who I was when I first walked by. I know how different I feel when walking past this wall now. I experience it differently now that I have changed. It is remarkable how a point that we revisit over time seems to change, when we may be the ones who have changed. Alternatively, the same site evokes something different in each of us based on our experiences. As we change while places stay the same, we use signifiers around us to mark our growth — giving us a sense of place in our inner worlds.