chaw logo
chaw seal
chaw logo

Mind of the Artist, Part XV: Elizabeth Sampson

April 21, 2017

Our featured Capitol Hill Art League (CHAL) artist this month is none other than CHAW teaching artist, Elizabeth Sampson, or "Miss Lizzie" as she's known around CHAW. We are always happy to feature a CHAW teaching artist; they are an integral part of the magic of CHAW and we love to give back to them after all of the work they do to build community and share their creativity with us! We know Elizabeth as a ceramic artist, but her background is based in painting, specifically reflecting on her early life in Southeast Asia. Elizabeth grew up in the Himalayan mountains and villages around Pakistan, projecting on her a curiosity about place and an exploration of connection to the past, ultimately influencing her work and offering a unique perspective into a vibrant country. Elizabeth has exhibited her work nationally and internationally, most recently in Costa Rica. Her paintings have been shown at The Phillips Collection, Q Street Fine Art Gallery, and other galleries around the DC area. 

"Karachi", Oil on Canvas, 2017, 60''x48''

Pakistan to me is a memory, a question, and an identity. I paint to understand this, and to show viewers an alternative version of Pakistan. As I paint, fading images of minarets surface from beneath murky water. Dust storms threaten to engulf entire villages.

"Engulfed", Oil on Canvas, 2012, 72''x48''

Pakistan today is a country of turmoil, but it wasn’t always so. My works that are inspired by Pakistani miniatures create new narratives of faraway lands with Pakistani symbols. By reimagining the past through myths, these stories and memories cause mental shifts. In my larger works I create alternative narratives to Pakistan’s often misunderstood history. I draw the viewer into a world of subtlety, while leaving room for reconsiderations of opinion.

"Gulmeena", Gouache on Parchment, 2015, 8''x12''

"Swat", Gouache on Parchment, 2015, 8''x12''

With colors of the east, and by using handmade or natural surfaces, my work connects to a personal memory or moment. My paintings show a view of a multifaceted Pakistan as I push viewers to reconsider their own viewpoints.

"Territory", Oil on Canvas, 2016, 48''x52''

Make sure to check out CHAL's opening reception of "This Earth" tomorrow, 5pm-7pm! Free and open to all, with wine, cheese, and conversations with CHAL artists.