Opening Reception for “Kevin Blythe Sampson: Olde Soul”
Paul Robeson Galleries
“Olde Soul” presents a selection of rarely-seen drawings by Kevin Blythe Sampson, alongside early mixed-media sculptures and ephemera from the artist’s studio.
The son of a civil rights leader, Sampson was raised in Elizabeth, New Jersey. He initially trained with and joined the New Jersey police force as a sketch artist and served for eighteen years, ten of which were spent police sketching. A series of family tragedies eventually compelled him to heal himself by making art.
“I am a member of my community, and my job is to get their hopes, dreams, loves, and hates out there,” Sampson has said of his practice. “It’s my obligation. I go out in the streets. I run my mouth all day long. I find out what people are thinking about most things. I try to find out the real stories behind people’s lives. I need all of them to make my day and to make a piece of work.”
This exhibition is held in dialog with the large-scale survey exhibition, Kevin Sampson: Black and Blue, on view at the Visual Arts Center of New Jersey, Summit, from September 28, 2018, to January 27, 2019.