A Promise is a Promise

Samantha Simpson
A Promise is a Promise
Samantha Simpson (b. 1968, Alberta, Canada), A Promise is a Promise, 2009. Etching with chine collé 20 x 16 in. (image); 28 x 23 in. (sheet) 9/40 Printed by James Stroud, assisted by James Mustin; Published by Center Street Studio, Milton, MA Museum purchase, Erna Bottigheimer Sands (Class of 1929) Art Acquisition Fund, 2010.102

Philadelphia-based artist Samantha Simpson is known for using ballpoint pens and ink to draw complex images in which text is transformed into the main subject matter, often surrounded by allegorically interpreted objects. In A Promise is a Promise, the lines of the ballpoint pen are replaced by lines etched into a copper plate, to produce the artist’s first print. The text in A Promise is a Promise is rendered in certain instances as a three-dimensional object, while in others as a highly ornate decorative element, reminiscent of Rococo design. Even though they are produced in an entirely different cultural context, Simpson’s drawings seem to share the crowdedness and variety characterizing the composition of late nineteenth-century posters, especially those for advertisements and carnivals.

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Rachel Spaulding ’11
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