About - SleepingAwakePhoto
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Samantha Goss is a South Carolina based conceptual Self-portrait photographer in the United States. She has been an exhibiting artist for over ten years. Her whimsical and surreal portraits have been exhibited in various venues including Praxis Gallery, Minneapolis, MN; Voies Off Festival, Arles, France; Espace Des Arts Sans Frontieres, Paris, France; SE Center for Photography, Greenville, SC; Photo Place Gallery, Middlebury, VT; and Masur Museum of Art, Monroe, LA. She has received awards for her work such as Juror’s Choice in Darkroom Gallery, 1st place at ALA Gallery in Lake Charles, LA, and featured artist and honorable mentions in various other exhibitions. Samantha has also curated group exhibitions that displayed in Gallery 29 at City Arts Factory, Orlando, FL; and The Cultural Center of Cape Cod, South Yarmouth, MA.

Samantha creates whimsical portraits that are romanticized versions of adventure, dreams, and life experiences. With a cinematic quality, each image appears as a moment in time that tell a story about the experiences of life.

She always had a passion for art and anything to do with music. While other children socialized, Samantha kept to herself and learned multiple ways to entertain herself without having to worry about the social pains that peer pressure offered. Learning to sing, play piano, and draw, she always had high expectations and dreams for herself. Traditionally a fine art drawer, she found other ways to express her ideas and make them come to life.

Photography captured her heart at a young age and continues to grow every day. Not having any prior education, she taught herself many photographic and editing techniques that she still uses in her works today. She did not receive any formal education for her art form until her sophomore year in college where she learned how to see more than what meets the eye. Now she displays her biggest fears, her largest dreams, and her darkest thoughts for all to see and come together as a community to connect.

Artist Statement

Exposing my personal dreams, secrets, and desires, my work manipulates each occurrence into something more beautiful than itself through direct and indirect self portraits. I explore Sleep Paralysis, Lucid Dreaming, Hallucinations, and various life events. My work displays coping and healing by capturing points in my life of uncertainty, sorrow, anxiety, or depression. I explore all these experiences through surrealism, warping the perception of what is real and what is a fantasy.

Entropy is the most beautiful concept to me and I love exploring how the earth reclaims itself by decay and regrowth. You won’t find my art being produced in a sterile studio but instead intertwined with nature and all that it is. From open fields and beautiful skies to deteriorating buildings, I tell my stories between the beauty of the living and eternal slumber.

My work is divided up into separate series as a form of categorizing and organization but my entire body of work, to me, is considered ongoing and as a whole unit titled ‘Sleeping Awake’. I frame my stories within a square format and typically center my compositions to ignore the laws and to show what is. Even though my work has hidden meanings, I leave it as open as possible for people to create their own stories to each image. Though I’m releasing my inner most intimate thoughts and experiences, I’m also revealing other people’s as well linking the viewer to myself through art. As dreams and experiences are replicated in static visuals, the viewer is left with a testament to the beauty in darkness.