Born 1973, Canberra, ACT
Samantha Small's recent work concerns itself with the making of domestic spaces from cardboard. The artist fabricates the rooms but exhibits only her photographs of them. In Room Temperature (2002) five rooms – Dining, Living, Lounge, Spare and Bedroom – reference the formal aspects of interiors painted by Vermeer. They contain pieces of ordinary floral carpet and patterned wallpaper as well as tiny brooms and cardboard boxes. The scale of the patterns on the wallpaper and carpet give away the illusion of these constructions as much as the corrugated cardboard edges visible at the windows. They suggest rental accommodation and somehow even a dusty smell and unloved aura and yet the light that pours in, always from the left, casts an enthralling warmth within them.
The rooms' ambivalent fragility faces us with a homely/unhomely dichotomy, the uneasiness of cardboard, the hopelessness of their nostalgia. Strangely affecting in their self–sufficiency, the rooms are puzzles, chambers of memories and the desire for manageability and control in an uncertain world.
Stephanie Radok from her Samstag catalogue essay, The Point of Knowing
2003 Anne & Gordon Samstag International Visual Arts Scholarship
2003 MFA, Goldsmiths College, London, UK
2000 Postgraduate Studies, Willem de Kooning Academie, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
1997 Bachelor of Visual Arts (Honours), University of South Australia