Shannon Lewis Headshot

Shannon Lewis

Shannon Lewis is a Canadian artist of Caribbean descent, whose practice includes painting and installation. She has exhibited in Canada, the USA, Trinidad, Switzerland, England and Germany. She has a BA from OCADU in Toronto and an MFA from Goldsmiths, University of London.

Shannon’s practice is about demanding a pleasure space that plays with primping and polishing not as an assimilation to the fashion-beauty complex; but a space of satisfying self-care and artistry. The collaged figures, whether in painting or life-sized silk chiffon installation, play with each other and themselves, repeat and reboot, telling stories and re- forming into new structures.

Shapeshifting is an adaptation. It is the work that we do to be able to move between spaces, classes and geographies. But what does that work—the constant reworking—do to our bodies or our minds? Shannon Lewis’ practice examines performance and the objects that we collect along the way. The figures attempt to place themselves in luxe interiors, but they slide in and out, never sitting just right. These evasive movements are about mobility, intersecting with intimacy, sexuality, gender, race, immigration, class and social climbing. Decolonial self-making as sport, for access and for life.

Golden Brown Girls (Sonia Barrett, Indrani Ashe, Shannon Lewis)

The Golden Brown Girls in "The Black Pow(d)er Room"

Indrani Ashe, Sonia E. Barrett & Shannon Lewis
The Golden Brown Girls in "The Black Pow(d)er Room", 2017
13 minutes

The Golden Brown Girls is named in homage to the American sitcom “The Golden Girls,” Indrani Ashe and Shannon Lewis imagine their future 30 years from now as women of color and professional creatives sharing houses together in international arthubs.

Featured in Loving Blackness

Shannon Lewis - She Always Imagined Herself The Wife Of A White Man I

She Always Imagined Herself The Wife Of A White Man I

She Always Imagined Herself The Wife Of A White Man I, 2013
Oil, paper on canvas
48 x 60”

She Always Imagined Herself The Wife of A White Man is a series of paintings exploring ideas of social mobility and privilege, and their ability or inability to attach themselves to people, relationships and places.

Featured in A More Perfect Union