Samoa Moriki is a man of many stories, few words and zero inhibitions. At different times he has been a performance artist, a musician, a clothing designer and a painter and has also been all at once. He sincerely chartered each path with no experience, and no doubt and mastered each entirely on his own. Art is Samoa’s expression, not just in the sense of the mediums he chose to communicate through, but the voice he learned to speak through. His internal world is a jumble of images, impressions and associations and art is how he relays his particular truth.
In all of Samoa’s work, and in all mediums, he pushes our comfort, and awakens recognition we had long forgotten about. His performance art express thoughts that we aren’t able to put words to, his clothing are the ideas we all know that we don’t say, his music is what we say and want to hear again, and his paintings are feelings, thoughts, and understandings that words don’t do justice to. Yet, each painting has something to say. Ken Takahura, the Japanese movie star, cuts through raging waters with the sun on his shoulder to save us with distraction, hope, and the template for the spaghetti western. James Baldwin emerges from a fluid swirl of bold and beautiful colors to remind us where we are, and what’s underneath. And a river must readjust itself in order to finish its course, which has been interrupted by the position of Nina Simone who forever stands between powerful beauty and hopeless pain.
Samoa has never had a plan beyond what he felt he needed to do, and where his interest was being pulled. He did not agonize over developing a style or compare, judge or question his direction. He simply set out on a journey and became a channel for the experience, as his paintings do as well. In this case, for Candy Coated Evil.
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