My recent work explores concepts of space and spaciousness, within the field of contemplative practise. Drawing on research from the disciplines of philosophy, psychology and neuroscience, as well as personal experience in the deep backcountry, I use abstraction to touch on relationships between forms that describe spaciousness regarding certain dyads such as: freedom/constraint, seen/unseen, stillness/motion, emptiness/fullness. Through highlighting the negative spaces and amplifying the relationships of individual parts to the larger whole (connected through shimmering buoyant filament), the installations become distinctive geographies that allow for imaginative and sometimes actual wanderings. These spaces are suggestive of generative pause, of spaces that don’t necessarily need to be filled, either temporally or physically.
My aesthetic approach to form and surface is rooted in my personal politics and my dedication to materiality. My intention is to preserve the natural qualities of clay in the finished piece: its raw tactility, visceral nature, and organic characteristics. Concurrently, my feminist values serve as an ethical framework through which imperfection is celebrated as beauty. By asserting a sense of intentional unadornment in my work, the handmade marks, raw surfaces and natural flaws are purposefully preserved.
Framing this aesthetic is a more theoretical investigation of how this earth-based material embodies an animacy akin to living matter, at an atomic and physical level. This malleable creative medium that can be imprinted, polished and scraped, torn paper-thin, or layered thick and gritty, that crystalizes in the kiln, has a fascinating ability to embody an energy that is resonant, calming, and grounding. I work with multiplicity because it allows me to create architectures that encourage embodied responses, while abstraction invites a quality of inquisitiveness. I seek to create installation environments that permeate this alchemy and animacy for both artist and viewer.
Canadian based artist Samantha Dickie received her BA in Gender Studies and Indigenous Studies, followed by her Diploma in Craft and Design in Ceramics. She has attended artist residencies in France, China, Yukon, and Alberta. Her minimalist abstract sculpture and architecturally scaled, multi- component installations have been featured in solo and group public gallery exhibitions across Canada. She has been the recipient of national and provincial grants, local awards, and has been the subject of numerous articles and reviews, including Ceramics Monthly. Her work can be found in permanent public art collections, private commissions and corporate installations internationally; at select commercial galleries in Canada; and at her studio by appointment.