SOLO EXPO: Samantha Johnston

Spearheading the valuations and auctions of iconic fine art photographs of often up to hundreds of thousands per work, Brandei Estes collaborates with Homecoming Gallery to share her latest emerging photographer crush: Samantha Johnston. Photographed in her own London apartment with her favourite pieces from the collection, Brandei shares with Homecoming her passion for photography, what excites her about Samantha’s work and insights on collecting.

“Photography is a very accessible medium – nowadays everyone has a camera, even on their smartphone – which makes it very relatable. That doesn’t mean, however, that fine art photography is ‘easy’ to make. Take Samantha’s work, for example, rich and vivid in colours, all processed and printed by hand. There’s also a highly seductive tension that permeates through all of her works, which I find utterly appealing.”

Samantha Johnston’s (Belfast ‘91) melancholic scenes draw viewers into different fictional perspective. Inspired by noir film, sci-fi and icons like Hitchcock, Wim Wenders and Simone de Beauvoir, she carefully places familiar objects in a domestic scene, inviting fantasy onto the stage. Reacting to our digital world, Samantha is equally a craftswoman as well as an artist. 

‘The way you process film really determines the outcome of the image. I hand mix and take temperatures of the chemicals myself. I already know the color I want the photo to be, so when I’m printing I’m putting specific colors in my work, It’s the same with black and white printing. Not everyone will see it, but little nuances can really determine the authenticity of an image.’

More about Samantha Johnston, her meditative practice and her love for the Irish coast in our conversation here.

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