member of:Observers of the Interdependence of Domestic Objects and Their Influence on Everyday Life

This group has been active for a long time and has already made some remarkable assertions which render life simpler from the practical point of view. For example, I move a pot of green color five centimeters to the right, I push in the thumbtack beside the comb and if Mr. A (another adherent like me) at this moment puts his volume about bee-keeping beside a pattern for cutting out vests, I am sure to meet on the sidewalk of the avenida Madero a woman who intrigues me and whose origin and address I never could have known...
--Remedios Varo

(Slideshow is of Artwork by Remedios Varo)
By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.
--Franz Kafka

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Samantha Keely Smith

Mutiny, 2012, by Samantha Keely Smith

Please press the images to see larger versions.

Vestige, 1998, by Samantha Keely Smith

Alley, 1998, by Samantha Keely Smith

Samantha Keely Smith first began painting her dreams, pulling strange, overlapping worlds with gleaming or ghostly figures in natural settings. She had recurring dreams, from childhood, that she feels may have come from a past life. As she painted them, their reason for existence began to clarify itself to her, and she was less haunted by them. She then moved into a deeper place, where words and particular shapes and beings no longer seemed “whole” enough to express what she was now struggling to express. After that came layer upon sometimes destroyed layer of motion and intense color, as if she were re-forming the chaos of the psychological underpinnings (memory, fear, dream, will-to-act, fantasy, all swirling around each other, conflicting with each other, making shifting alliances) of what we perceive as the solid, physical world into a more open-ended image we could stand before and perhaps even try to understand. 

Shift, by Samantha Keely Smith--You can see "another" world underneath...
Maybe, then, from that chaos, without the authoritarian, pre-defined, concrete, unchangeable image we call “reality” super-imposed on top of it, we could re-define the outlines of the world created by those psychological underpinnings, changing the universe as we stand there, and then leave the room to discover some miraculous occurrence. The world we see is not the only world there to experience...

Kindred by Samantha Keely Smith(The sea and the sky consider a trade, the sun jumps in to join...)

“What I'm trying to talk about or discover is really this whole notion of another existence coexisting with the one we see in reality, and the possibility of past lives, the spirit world and all that--the idea of being constrained by the here-and-now and the hold that earthly things have on us, our spirit, our soul."

Cantos, by Samantha Keely Smith

She says: "... I see the images the way you see things with your peripheral vision because they're so fleeting that I can never be totally sure of what I've seen...I only know a painting is finished when I can see there is nothing 'off' about it, and that it feels like what I saw in that first fleeting glimpse."

Vessel, by Samantha Keely Smith (look closely!)

"There are two worlds that exist together, and there is one that pushes against the other, that claims the other doesn’t, or need not, exist. " --To me, those two worlds are the one we easily see and the one that is harder for us to see: the one we want to believe in, want to believe into existence. That is the one that takes work, focus, concentration, because it contradicts the version handed to us on a plate.

Surfacing, by Samantha Keely Smith



  1. Zoe, thank you for introducing me to Samantha Keely Smith; she is my new favorite artist. I could look at her work all day.

    1. aren't the paintings phenomenal? you can see really large photos in some places on the web, i recommend it, i imagine in person the paintings would just knock me over. on top of everything else, the colors she uses are so powerful...