I was asked to contribute a piece to the lovely group exhibition titled ‘Sensitive Sweethearts’, curated by Tegan Iverson as a part of this year’s Midsumma Festival. As the title of the exhibition suggests, every artist was asked to create a piece inspired by the term ‘Sensitive Sweethearts’. It was an honour to be a part of this show, and I highly recommend going to visit FortyFiveDownstairs where it’s held before it closes this Saturday, 15th Feb. Tegan interviewed a few of the artists about their practice and experience with creating their pieces and so I thought I would share mine with you, my lovely readers.
Tegan: Who are you? (age, day-job, star-sign)
Shannon: My name is Shannon Mary, I’m 27 years old, a Gemini and a freelance artist and writer.
Tegan: Give me some of your faves (artist, song, movie, type of flower)
Shannon: One of my favourite artists is Yoko Ono, she is beyond inspiring with the way she constantly pushes boundaries and finds ways to create new and fascinating ideas. One of my favourite songs at the moment is ‘Hope is a dangerous thing for a woman like me to have, but I have it’ by Lana Del Rey. One of my favourite films is Withnail and I and my favourite flower is a sunflower.
Tegan: Tell me about your artwork for Sensitive Sweethearts?
Shannon: I created my artwork after reading some of John Keats’ letters and poems (hence the title). I was thinking about another mountain landscape I painted last year and the way a friend had told me they liked the one white part I’d added to the work. It was such a small part but it had been my favourite too. Thinking about human connection and sensitivity, I felt like the way my heart reacted to that comment from a friend would be the perfect inspiration for my work for this show.
Tegan: Where did you make this work?
Shannon: I made this piece in my bedroom studio, sitting on the floor atop the multi-patterned old duvet cover I use as a sort of protective, painting picnic rug.
Tegan: What makes you a sensitive sweetheart?
Shannon: I think I have a larger supply of empathy than I do of anything else in my personality. This makes me incredibly sensitive to the people around me, what they’re feeling, what they’re communicating not only with words but also with their actions and body language. I think that’s what deeply qualifies me be an official ‘Sensitive Sweetheart’.
Tegan: What does Midsumma Festival mean to you?
Shannon: Midsumma Festival is grounded in the beautiful concept of inclusivity, creative expression, and love. I cannot imagine more beautiful, pure, and important reasons to hold an incredibly beautiful and diverse festival.
Tegan: When was the last time you cried?
Shannon: I cried this morning. I’ve been recently heartbroken and for the first time in weeks, I woke up and forgot that it happened and the pain seemed to wash over me with new levels of hurt. I cried for an hour before getting out of bed. But then I also cried while watching a video my Mum showed me recently of a cute baby dancing so, it doesn’t always take something has devastating as heartbreak to bring me to tear