Breanna Shanahan

  • Ceramics
  • Drawing
  • Fibre Arts
  • Fine art
  • Installations
  • Metal
  • Mixed Media
  • New Media
  • Painting
  • Sculpture
  • Textiles
  • Wood

Artist Biography:

Breanna Shanahan (she/her/they) is a third generation white settler of Maltese and Irish descent. She is a recent resident of the traditional territories of the Erie, Neutral, Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee and Mississaugas (Also known as Hamilton) Shanahan received her MFA at Concordia University in june 2019 and was a SSHRC recipient in 2017. She is one of the newest members of the Assembly Gallery artist collective and is a longstanding member of the Montreal based artist collective QO (Quite Ourselves) Shanahan is a volunteer at the Hamilton Artist Inc. and her works have been exhibited in Italy, China, Austria, the United States of America and in Canada. Shanahan has taught Sculpture and Drawing courses across Canada at multiple post-secondary and community institutions. 

Artist Statement:

In my research creation based art practice I explore digitally fabricated outputs alongside traditional skill based sculpture and flat work creation derived from a Daily Art Practice that engages the community in the art studio. Working off of basic understandings in the field of social psychology, projects reimagine relation in visible forms, being as receptive and impacted by those they are created around and with as we are in our communities and by our geological locations of living. By working with technology as a form of human output I seek to embody the Cyborg of Donna Haraway's A Cyborg Manifesto (1991), opposing antagonistic dualisms of human vs machine and human vs nature to look at overlaps in the human, technological and animal realms. This cultural-posthumanist approach to ‘object/painting/drawings’ questioning silos of artistic creation and works within the expanded field (Krauss, Rosalind, 1979) to create new languages of art-making. My works use shadow as a drawing material, paint as negative space and exposed canvas as subjective space, they give paintings a material body that interacts with the viewer's body, sees material textures as narrative landscape and the layering of perspex as creation of tonal variation and colour.

The Daily Art Practice (D.A.P) is a studio philosophy, workshop and course that seeks meaning in work after and during creation. This approach poses the question: What is it to produce everyday or on smaller scales? What do we create for? How can constraints of time and materiality, along with engagement with others steer ideas and forms? My DAP works take note of people I have seen and lost, weather anomalies, what I ate for breakfast and hundreds of other random thoughts as I engage verbally with a group while place-holding a stream of consciousness through time based works on paper. Daily Art Practice seeks to battle isolation in the moment, and provide a toolbox of ideas to weave compositionally and materially through further investigation. My history as a digital fabrication technician, and my artist educator practice has my classroom and studio inextricably linked in the creation of works that develop both an idea, and novel forms of art-making.

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