Skip to content

New West art exhibit puts contemporary spin on mythology

You can catch Samantha Harrison's work at the Gallery at Queen's Park starting Sept. 7.
Samantha Harrison's Recreations of Myth & Spirit features works that seek to recreate mythological figures as modern people. It's on at the Gallery at Queen's Park starting Sept. 7.

Mythological figures get a contemporary spin in a new exhibition at the Gallery at Queen’s Park.

The Arts Council of New Westminster is presenting Recreations of Myth & Spirit, featuring work by Samantha Harrison, from Sept. 7 to 25.

The show features eight oil paintings that are part of an ongoing series that seeks to recreate figures of mythological and religious origin as modern people.

“In creating each painting, the objective is to match each model to different figures based on a moment of perceived similarity, while also deliberately mismatching the models in other aspects of their visual characteristics, such as their perceived racial identity or biological sex,” Harrison said in a press release. “In doing this, an attempt is made to draw focus upon the idea that mythological and spiritual figures are deeply connected to — and inspired by — various aspects of the human condition, even the mundane.”

She said the paintings serve as both “recreations and re-creations” — representing both newer interpretations of older stories and a kind of “play-acting” between friends, where each model searches for themselves within the character that has been given to them.

“With this, the viewer is hopefully encouraged to identify with these figures, as well as with the individuals acting as them — and, by extension, engage with the stories surrounding them without feelings of exclusion,” Harrison said. “Gods may or may not be, but, regardless, godlikeness is within everyone.”

The gallery is in Centennial Lodge in Queen’s Park (near the bandshell). Recreations of Myth & Spirit is open Wednesdays through Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Entry is free, and donations to the operation of the gallery are welcomed.

 You can find out more at Samantha Harrison's website or Instagram.

Follow Julie MacLellan on Twitter @juliemaclellan.
Email Julie, [email protected]