Senior Spotlight: Shori Sims

Shori Sims

Describe your art practice.
My practice utilizes dialectic opposites to create 3D inter-material sculpture. By doing this, I am seeking to approximate the true nature of an art object by focusing first more from what it isn’t than what it is. All of this is done with an eye towards specifically African American life and culture, and the associated contradictions one observes therein (for example: consider whiteness and Blackness as dialectical opposites that exist only in reference to one another).

What are you currently working on?
Recently, I have been investigating the role of graffiti as what is produced when the two separate and supposedly irreconcilable disciplines (i.e. sculpture and architecture) rub against each other. Graffiti navigates aspects of drawing, writing, and painting; and in doing this presents with an unmatched sense of fluidity — becoming simultaneously a reflection of all these disciplines, and none of them.

How has your artistic practice changed since you came to CMU?
Before I came to CMU: my work had no basis in theory whatsoever. My work was proficient with regards to aesthetics; but there really wasn’t much to talk about beyond that. Since I’ve been at CMU, I’ve made sure to always address the concept behind a work either before, while, or after its completion. Though my ideas as a younger student were pretty straight-forward and easily attained (everything became a commentary on intra group conflict and how bad it is) I am trying now to deal with more complex ideas — rooted in philosophy and language — but not to explain them in a way that is unnecessarily opaque.

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