17 March - 30 April 2021
The London Collective Vortic


In advance of his inaugural show with Vigo to be held at Bridge Point Art Centre and concurrently in the Vigo Virtual space we are offering a selection of fantastic drawings by Cornish Artist Samuel Bassett completed during lockdown. Complex and witty these works are essentially a narrative collection of self-portraits delving into the artist’s ontology.


All works are in the £500 to £950 price range and in an effort to lure the next generation of Cornish artists aged 3 to 10 into the Vigo fold 10% of the net sales of these drawings will be donated to provide art supplies for primary school children in economically deprived areas of Cornwall. Little things in times like these can all help so hopefully we can assist in getting those creative juices going!  


"It goes without saying that 2020 will be defined as the year we were forced to approach our lives differently. Sam of course is no exception, not only did he leave St Ives, where he worked for over a decade, but there was a marked change in his practice. He rediscovered drawing, and in doing so found a Cornwall he worried might be lost. As the world was locked-down, Sam picked up his pencils and pens and produced hundreds of drawings. At his new studio in central Penzance, I carefully leaf through them, sheet by sheet – the influence of his new life seeping in; the Penwith moorland a reoccurring theme, the wind-battered hills, the darkening sky. Words such as silence, empty and ancient, with references to the Cornwall of his heritage, granite milestones, Saint Peter, pilchards.” - Matt Retallick, March 2021


These drawings will be shown through Vortic VR as part of The London Collective.
Below is an excerpt from the artist’s notes:


With epic health anxiety and drinking loads I fell steep. Not leaving the house, not sniffing the outside air. I had just moved to Heamoor with my partner Ali, to our new house. Small but good and a safe place to be stuck at this mad time.


I already haven’t made a painting for months after leaving my studio at Porthmeor, St.ives. Leaving town has really fucked with my making, I’m uprooted. Still with no studio set up, and all my stuff in storage I found I could only work at home and now, being more settled, when walking in the very local area. Lockdown seemed to be providing me with a kind of restriction, I was limited like many others. This I think worked for me as I had been feeling lost, with both work and place for example. I was down a cul de sac for sure.


Now, I only had a dip pen and inks, pencils and a couple of packs of chalks and oil pastels. With this, and a load of paper I started drawing, like really sitting down to it, making many in one hit. Walking and talking and drawing and drinking. Looking back, this time was blurry and messy in the mental sense, epic highs and dirty lows but it pinned me down, helped contain me and allowed me to process many thoughts and experiences through drawing.


I had lost this freedom, this instant kind of turning over images quickly, no pressure, no stress. Just let it bleed. I suppose the imagery looks into ownership, territory, personal mythology, the landscape and just being. They are what they are, ups and downs and glimpses of the Penwith now.


Its left me with countless works on paper from this 4-month period that are now being incorporated into my painting and the attitude and process is feeding my painting in the studio like it never has before. I’ve learnt and I love learning. I’m back on an open road, bleeding like never before hahahaha


I’m getting confident


Every cloud ah…Fucking virus