Samantha Beste

Samantha Beste Paintings



The title of this show echoes assembling is taken from Hart Crane’s poem The Bridge.

“...A tugboat, wheezing wreaths of steam,
Lunged past, with one galvanic blare stove up the River.
I counted the echoes assembling, one after one,
Searching, thumbing the midnight on the piers.
Lights, coasting, left the oil tympanum of waters;
The blackness somewhere gouged glass on a sky.
And this thy harbor, O my City, I have driven under,
Tossed from the coil of ticking towers...Tomorrow,
And to be...Here by the River that is East---
Here at the waters edge the hands drop memory;
Shadowless in that abyss they unaccounting lie.
How far away the star has pooled the sea---
Or shall the hands be drawn away to die?...”

This series of paintings is an offering to my muse, the city. It is an elegiac meditation on Manhattan since the towers fell, expressed in river nocturnes and Central Park boat pond rhythms. I gain solace in the continuities of the city. The old-time pleasures of gazing at the rippled reflections of the model boats in Central Park and the vitality of the construction of the new World Trade Center represent an energetic avowal of the will to survive and prosper, which draws so many to the city in a positive spirit of self-assertion.

I constantly search out the city’s reflection in art and literature from the past. The patterns and repetitions observed in images and narratives of long-dead painters and poets are reassuring: the city has seen trouble come and trouble go and continues to sail on through it all.

Despite the city’s vicissitudes and volatile transitions, many wish to test themselves in such powerful currents and moments of contemplation can be hard to come by. These paintings provide such a moment: a glimpse of hope and faith in the future as we look back at the wake, then forward into the wind, carrying memory safely with us.

Samantha Beste
April 2013


  • Art Students League of New York : Bill Behnken, Richard Pantell 2004-present
  • Heatherley's School of Art (Portraiture) London, England 1993-1995
  • Nova Scotia College of Art & Design Halifax, Nova Scotia (BFA) 1988-1990
  • AICA Loft Program, N.Y.C. 1987-1988
  • Cleveland Institute of Art, Cleveland, Ohio BFA program 1985-1987
  • S.A.C.I (Painting), Florence, Italy 1983-1985

Recent Exhibitions:

  • "Echoes Assembling" Theo Ganz Studio, Beacon, NY 2013
  • "Drawn to New York" City College of New York, 2012
  • "Summer Blues" Theo Ganz Studio, Beacon, NY 2012
  • "The Graphic Image" Belskie Museum of Art, Closter, NJ 2012
  • "SAGA 79th Members Exhibition" The Old Print Shop, NYC 2012
  • "Urban Rhapsody" (solo ) Daniel Aubry Gallery, Beacon NY 2012

New York:

  • "3 Emerging Artists" Studio 57 Fine Art 2011
  • "Inked Up – Printmakers in the Parks" The Arsenal Gallery 2011
  • "Society of American Graphic Artists 78th Members Exhibition" Prince Street Gallery 2011
  • "Print Club of New York: Prints from Members Collections" The National Arts Club 2011
  • "Print Club of New York Artist Showcase" The Society for Illustrators 2010
  • "Audubon Artists" (won Gamblin Award) Salmagundi Club 2010
  • "2 Artists of the Art Students League" Studio 57 Fine Arts 2009
  • "New York Scenes" Publicis (A.S.L.) 2009
  • "Red Dot Exhibition" Art Student's League of New York 2009
  • "6 Artists of the Art Students League" Studio 57 Fine Arts 2008
  • "Visions of New York" Manhattan Borough Presidents Office Gallery 2007


  • "Winter", Clapham Art Gallery 2000
  • "Illuminations", Clapham Art Gallery 1999
  • "Street Vision", Clapham Art Gallery 1998
  • "The Collectors", Alchemy Gallery 1998
  • "Royal Portrait Society", Mall Galleries 1994 

Samantha began studying painting at the Art Students League with Isaac Soyer at the age of eleven.
She has studied and painted in many cities, always preferring buildings to beaches. Her paintings and prints
speak of her deep romantic connection to all urban terrain, and to the great ancestral trail of urban artists.