Shanequa Gay, an Atlanta native, received her AA in Graphic Design and Fashion Marketing from the Art Institute of Atlanta (1999), a BA in Painting from The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), summa cum laude (2015), and currently an MFA candidate at Georgia State University. Gay is one of ten selected artists for OFF THE WALL a city-wide Mural initiative led by WonderRoot and the Atlanta Super Bowl Host Committee (2018). In 2013, Gay was chosen by The Congressional Club to be the illustrator for the First Lady's Luncheon hostess gift for First Lady Michelle Obama. Gay's work includes features in the Lions Gate film Addicted, the BET television series Being Mary Jane and Zoe Ever After, and the OWN series Greenleaf. Solo exhibitions include the Hammonds House Museum, Atlanta, GA (2015); Anne O Art Gallery, Atlanta, GA (2016); Wofford College, Spartanburg, SC (2017); Mary S. Byrd Gallery, Augusta University, Augusta, GA (2018); Sumter Gallery of Art, Sumter, SC (2018); and Milliken Gallery, Converse College, Spartanburg, SC (2018). Group exhibitions include Xhibiting Blackness, Evolve the Gallery, Sacramento, CA (2014); WonderRoot CSA: Atlanta Contemporary Art Center, Atlanta, GA (2015); Personal Politics: Artist as Witness, Memory Keepers, & Social Conscience, Hudgens Center for the Arts, Duluth, GA (2016); New Painting, The Southern Gallery, Charleston, SC (2016); 5 Perspectives, Steffen Thomas Museum, Buckhead, GA (2018). Residencies include Independent Study, Iwakuni, Japan (2014); The Creatives Project Artist-in-Studio Program, The Goat Farm Arts Center, Atlanta, GA (2015-2017); and Baldwin's Room Artist in Residence, Johannesburg, South Africa (2017). Public Collections include The Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD), Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong; The Georgia Cyber Innovation and Training Center, Augusta, GA; The Chattanooga African American Museum, Chattanooga, TN; and Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History, Atlanta, GA.
From the Artist... My work evaluates place, tradition, storytelling, and subject matter to develop imaginative dialogues and alternative strategies for self-imaging. Through installations, paintings, performance, video, and monumental sculptural figures, I am fabricating environments of ritual and memorial, depicting amalgamated images of familiar iconography, new gods, and mythical figures whose lives have been impacted by systemic inequalities. By developing counter and re-imagined narratives that live within the duality of physical and spiritual worlds, I am exploring the historical and contemporary social concerns of hybrid cultures, through the gaze of the female progenitor, and how these cultures have often been rendered invisible and their identities denied.