Portraits of Chameleon – Artist in Residence Sam Simpson

10 August 2016

Visual artist Sam Simpson is in the studio with Company Chameleon this summer as our very own Artist-in-Residence. Sam has been capturing dancers in rehearsals, creating original artwork depicting Chameleon’s unique dance and movement style.

We’re delighted to be able to offer an original piece created by Sam during her residency to one of our supporters. The artwork can be won in a special prize-draw, taking place as part of our current crowdfunding campaign for Chameleon Youth, to donors pledging £50 or more.

Sam’s artwork is one of the exclusive gifts available to those pledging their support to the campaign, which sees us set-out to raise £3000 in four weeks for our new youth dance company.

One week into the fundraiser, we catch up with Sam to find out more about her work, and her time so far as Company Chameleon’s Artist-in-Residence.

Q.1. What is your background?

I graduated in 2011 studying Fine Art at Blackpool and the Fylde College, since then I have been teaching at a special educational needs school in St Annes, and have had exhibitions at different venues in Blackpool and Manchester.

Dancing is my passion and that’s what I draw, people who love dancing.  I work as a freelance artist delivering drawing and movement workshops and selling my artwork.  More recently delivering a mini event called “We love dancing come join us”.  Both the movement workshops and “We love dancing…” are designed for people to forget their stresses and get lost in music.

Q.2. How did you get involved with Company Chameleon?

Originally I saw a performance of STRIDE, the annual young men’s dance project, in the Whitworth Art Gallery. Company Chameleon collaborated on the project and I thought it was wonderful. Months later I ended up sat next to Natalie (Company Chameleon’s Learning & Participation Officer) at a Gold Arts Award sharing event, I expressed an interest in working with the company and things kind of went from there.

Q.3. How have you found your time as Company Chameleon’s artist in residence?

It’s been very exciting working with both Company Chameleon and Chameleon Youth.  I have been spending time with the company during preparation for the summer tour and in the early stages of Chameleon Youth rehearsals. I’ve been drawing the guys as they dance and getting some great photographs, which I have also been drawing from.  I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a day than watching dancers, it’s always inspiring and always a buzz.

To be in for a chance of winning Sam’s artwork and to pledge your support to Chameleon Youth, visit our crowdfunding page and DONATE.

Read more about Sam and her work on her website.

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"10 was such a wonderful experience - I cant wait to see more of your incredible work!" "Effortless grace, strength, humour and athleticism - a visual treat!" "We brought 65 young people to your performance tonight - every single one loved it! What an amazing show!" "This show reminded me why I dance and what I’m constantly working towards! Thank you for this experience!" "Such beauty in the small moments of this show - please don't stop doing what you’re doing"

Thank you to everyone who comes to watch us perform and for all your wonderful comments and feedback!