Shelby Stone


Untitled I (in progress), Mixed media on paper

Within my collages and photographic practice, I explore the liminal spaces between lived experiences, emotion, and ancestry to reinforce cultural histories, in addition to my own. Through a process of meticulous construction, I manifest expressions of intimacy, disclosures of vulnerability, and honorings of the various realms of blackness, the feminine and their multidimensional embodiments into layered landscapes. Giving close consideration to detail, I utilize florals– both photographed portraits and collected specimens– vintage magazine cut-­outs, gold leaf and found material. These elements and their juxtaposition to one another, are intended to evoke memories, that are personal, shared, and yet to be discovered.

For The Aesthetics of Wellness, a series of three new works will celebrate the holistic nature of black womanhood and the notions of elemental ancestry that lend themselves to holistic self­-care practices. A survey of the magic that is associated with the female form and its ability when nurtured, to acknowledge a collective wisdom that exists between women of color, who for centuries have been subject to systemic harms that belittle our complexities and often result in an erasure of our histories. Offerings of flowers, elements of light, artifact, minerals, tree bark, visuals of space, sea, earth, and various patterns will be used to create two-dimensional safe spaces, while incorporating a surrealist aesthetic to represent the expansive forms of which we exist.