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Sam Samore, The I (1-4), 2000. Sérigraphie. Galerie Gorney Bravin + Lee, New York. © Christian Aschman.

8.6 — 8.10.2000

Sam Samore – Pathological Tales / Schizophrenic Stories

artist(s): Sam Samore
curator(s): Enrico Lunghi

This exhibition gives an outlook on all the series of photographs by Sam Samore realised from 1973 up until today (Fictions, The Sorcerers, Situations, Allegories of Beauty, The Suicidist, The Oasis, The Killers), a new series entitled The I and the installations Forest of Schizophrenic Love Stories (1998-), The Magic Bed (1995-) and The Flying Carpet (2000), which was newly created for this exhibition.

In an interview with the French critic Jérôme Sans, to be published in the exhibition catalogue, Sam Samore talks about his artistic process in the following way:

Jérôme Sans: "Your interest in characters - this seems to be something you often bring with you to your installations."

Sam Samore: "In my work, I don't distinguish a conceptual difference between painting and photography. I don't give specific titles to the paintings. (There is a numbering system.) Each is called Situations or Lips Triptych or The Killers - so if you want to talk about a particular photograph, you have to describe the people. What kind of language to use? A listing of physical characteristics? An interpretation of what someone in the painting may be feeling? What are the linkages between the characters? From the start, I collected these observations. This initial research led me in the direction of projects where I place words - adjectives, poetic phrases - on transparent surfaces like windows, mirrors, screens, curtains - by way of etching, silk-screen, sandblasting, vinyl lettering, paint. Certainly I owe a debt to Manet's Bar at the Folies Bergères and his mirror fascination.

Like a portrait painter, like a biographer, sometimes I research the life of a single person, or maybe I investigate the personality of a particular building. I gather information from press conferences, hagiographies, interviews, talk shows, psychological case studies, autobiographies. Sometimes I write a poetic speech evocative of the individual: House of Schizophrenic Stories (1994) would be an example of this. Are these phrases abstractions with an odor? Sometimes I present a group of adjectives as in a personality profile - Pathological Portrait (1992) is a good example of that. Can this list change over time?"

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This exhibition is put together in collaboration with the FRAC Languedoc-Roussillon (Montpellier), the galleries Art & Public (Geneva), Gorney Bravin + Lee (New York), Gisela Capitain (Cologne), Massimo de Carlo (Milan), Rodolphe Janssen (Brussels), Anne de Villepoix (Paris) and thanks to many private collectors.


Sam Samore, The I (1-4), 2000. Sérigraphie. Galerie Gorney Bravin + Lee, New York. © Christian Aschman.