Artist on the Edge: Sophia Dawson

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Credit: Sophia Dawson

Sophia Dawson is a dynamic and innovative artist whose artwork and vision continues to inspire me. Below you will find snippets of a conversation with the artist and images from her repertoire:

  1. What inspires you?
  • God the Creator
  • I went from discovering my talent and not knowing I had it
  • Some of my pieces come in visions
  • In my studio late at night I pray over my pieces and work
  • I am a co-creator with God.
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Credit: Sophia Dawson

  1. Why are you making work?
  • To serve
  • People in my paintings have gone through some sort of injustice, struggle, difficulty so I make the pieces known to everyday so that these individuals and their stories become known as well.
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Credit: Sophia Dawson

  1. Tell me about your process.
  • Lots of playing
  • I use documentaries and books as research to get to know who these people are and to learn  how they have overcome  and it moves me to action.
  • Documentaries I remember distinctly inspiring me to act include “Central Park 5” and “Every Mother’s Son”
  • Lots of work comes from stills from documentaries.
  • For practice I draw and paint people from life.
  • My work involves layers, which involves projection, a photograph, having people sit and painting
  • In my practice I have the freedom to switch up what is or is not working so my style often varies and the viewer may or may not be able to tell that it is the same artist.
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Credit: Sophia Dawson

  • Acrylic and oil paint used almost interchangeably on a canvas and a new technique I am using called canvas collage.
  • Inspired by the work of AFRICOBRA in creating a space inspired by many creative art forms. My space, Wet Paint, will be a space where creative minds come together.
  • I didn’t know I could paint until I was 16. I can do things really quickly, such as in 24 or 48 hours. Experimenting within my practice keeps it fun.
  • I also include the individuals in each painting in the process.  Whether that means sitting down with them, a phone call, a visit to a prison institution etc.
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Credit: Sophia Dawson

  1. Advice or wisdom for young people.
  • If you want to be an artist, you have to do the work. You have to keep creating. Encourage yourself and be inspired. There is no perfect moment to create art. You have to keep moving and create 100%.
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Credit: Sophia Dawson


Instagram: @iamwetpaint

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Credit: Sophia Dawson

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