Over seven billion souls exist on this planet, each with a unique face and story. Shana Wilson transfers her visceral love for the human landscape to canvas. She paints inspirational women from all walks of life, all having in common the ability to inspire and create social change. She pays tribute to them on canvas, painting a long-overdue celebration of trailblazing women.
Each brush stroke creates a controlled cacophony as it assembles the intricate jigsaw of the human face. The artist tenderly cradles the peaks and valleys, darkness and light, colors and neutrals, empty and full, hard edges and soft curves. An entire life’s journey is written on this human landscape; a journey that begs to be documented and treasured.
The Canadian artist has painted portraits for the past 20 years, but, for the past years, directly inspired by the #MeToo movement, she has focused on women from all walks of life. Her work has brought her together with For Women Who Roar in the creation of an exhibition celebrating and empowering women. “Visit any major gallery or museum in the world and it is teeming with paintings of nude women in states of subservience to erotica. Contrast this with the paintings of clothed men in states of strength and power.” Shana Wilson wants to flip this artistic marginalization and change the balance of how women are portrayed in the arts.
After a worldwide search, Shana was also selected and commissioned by TIME Magazine to paint two front covers, of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Jackie Kennedy, for their monumental “100 Women of the Year Special Edition”, now in worldwide circulation.
For 72 years, TIME named a Man of the Year, which gave way to Person of the Year in 1999. In 2019, the magazine launched 100 Women of the Year, a project spotlighting influential women who were often overshadowed. To recognize these women, TIME has created 89 new covers, two of which were designed by our artist Shana Wilson: Ruth Bader Ginsburg (1996) and Jacqueline Kennedy (1962).
Shana Wilson has partnered with the successful and empowering social platform and publication For Women Who Roar to create a major art exhibition celebrating the strength, intelligence, and talent of inspirational women. Portraits include the award-winning musician Serena Ryder, a breast cancer survivor changing the way we look at scars, an Olympic gold medalist, a 65-year young model breaking new ground in the industry, the courageous Dr. Blasey Ford, Gloria Steinem, Buffy Sainte Marie, and so many more.
Follow Shana Wilson on Instagram@shanawilsonartist