Samuel Baah Kortey

My studio is my my amplifier. It’s a sanctuary where the silent voices hidden in various historical moments, cultures, and times become audible for me.

What I do in one sentence: Caring, creating, and providing the next generation experiences I never had at that stage.

Why I didn’t get a “proper” 9 to 5 job: And who said what I do is not a 9-5 job? I happen to move at my own pace but my thinking and research processes require the 9-5 model.

An artwork I dream of and I would get accomplished if space, time and money were abundant: I would freeze time in the most intense space in the world and give people the luxury to pause from work, talk and care for each other. Make people feel worth what they are fighting for and make them feel heard.

Why I do what I do: The next generation I think. I am enjoying a world that was built by public-spirited and a staunch generation so to appreciate their efforts I try to make it an easy place for the ones that will come after me.

Artists, I have on my watch list (and why): Lord Kitchner, Emeka Ogboh, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, Ibrahim Mahama, and Bright Tetteh Ackwerh does it all for me. They motivate and speak to me from different times and space.

I am afraid of my anger, I don’t know what it looks like and how it can destroy me.

I know that a piece is finished when … There is nothing like a finished piece to me, there is always a soul willing to hop on. I pause when the spirits tell me to.

How I want to be buried resp. words I want to be written on my tombstone: “He was a son who wanted to be a father to all.”

Samuel Baah Kortey, Villa Romana Fellow 2023. Studio visit in Samuel’s studio at Villa Romana in Florence.