Saturday, August 2, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Three women changing the status quo of Philly's visual arts scene

Formerly considered a male-dominated solo sport is now prime for collaboration as well as a woman's touch. Philadelphia artists, Ameerah K. Art, Nebulus Flair and Shanina Dionna have answered the call and are hosting a collective art gallery appropriately named, "Art Sisters." The event takes place this Saturday, October 12th from 7 to 10 pm at the Urban Art Gallery on 252 S. 52nd Street.

Three women changing the status quo of Philly's visual arts scene

From left: Ameerah K Art, Nebulous Flair, and Shanina Dionna. Photo courtesy of D. Burton Photography.
From left: Ameerah K Art, Nebulous Flair, and Shanina Dionna. Photo courtesy of D. Burton Photography.

Our society is in a constant state of change due to new technologies and cultural blending.  This state of flux is best summed up in Jay Z’s phrase “New Rules”, which he coined as a reference to his unprecedented Samsung deal. The deal earned his latest album, Magna Carta, Holy Grail platinum status before its release date. The groundbreaking deal was simply a loud echo of what the people on the ground level have been hinting at for years.  In order to survive, you must adapt to these environmental changes.

The art world is no different.  Formerly considered a male-dominated solo sport is now prime for collaboration as well as a woman’s touch.  Philadelphia artists, Ameerah K. Art, Nebulus Flair and Shanina Dionna have answered the call and are hosting a collective art gallery appropriately named, Art SistersThe event takes place this Saturday, October 12th from 7 to 10 pm at the Urban Art Gallery on 252 S. 52nd Street.

These three ultra-talented young ladies are ready to showcase their individual growth as artists and their dedication to each other and womankind.  Below is a Q&A with each artist that explains the significance of the event and what each artist brings to the table.  Enjoy.

Nebulus Flair

CC: Tell us a little about “Art Sisters.”

NF: It’s coming together magically. When I talk to the girls about it we get really excited and we’re ready to show Philly how women can support each other in the same field and really be genuine.  I think it’s going to be groundbreaking for us.

CC: If you all were a singing group, who would you be?

NF: If we were a singing group…wow…I don’t want to say Destiny’s Child.  We’re not divas and we’re all equally supporting each other.  Maybe I would say TLC?  No, I don’t want to say TLC. 3LW? I guess I’m going to go with TLC because we have a genuine bond. And I’d be Chili since I’m low key.

CC: How would you describe your creative style?

NF: I paint from the heart.  I paint exactly what I feel.  I paint exactly what my mind sees.  And since I don’t have any formal art training. It’s raw. It’s my essence and what I have to give.  I use a lot of color and nothing’s ever the same.  It’s me.

Shanina Dionna

CC: What do you bring to “Art Sisters”?

SD: My work is very purpose driven.  It’s usually a testimony to whatever it is that I’m going through at the time.  So I’ll be bringing purpose and a bit of versatility in terms of the medium of photography and graphic arts.

CC: What do you want the audience to get from your work and this show in general?

SD: What I want people to get from this show as a whole is to be encouraged, enlightened and empowered—especially women.  Like Ameerah said earlier, it’s not about bashing the men but it’s uplifting and encouraging women to strive together so that we can collectively grow.

CC: So in terms of empowerment, what are some things you wished you would’ve known five years ago?

SD: I used to be a very insecure human being.  I drowned in my insecurities and today I’m a lot stronger mentally, spiritually—I’m a lot more focused and centered.  And it amazes me the things people see in you that you don’t see yourself.   I’ve learned that I’m a brave soul and that I have something to offer this world.  So if I would’ve known that 5 years ago, that would’ve been great.

Ameerah K. Art

CC: How would you describe your unique style?

AKA: I’m not sure how I can answer that. I think any artist’s uniqueness comes from just being honest in their work and allowing that to shine through on their canvas.  Most of the time I’ll just have an idea that I just want to see through.

CC: What made you decide to partner with Nebulus Flair and Shanina Dionna for this event?

AKA: I always had this fantasy of women artists putting on an art show together and bringing our networks together to collectively celebrate our talents.  I met Shanina and Ky (Nebulus Flair) through their own events and I just really liked their energy.  After explaining my idea, I realized they had similar ideas so it turned out to be a really good mix.  And since then we’ve been spending time together and they’re just really sincere people and their art is dope.

CC: What can we expect from this event without giving out too many secrets?

AKA: It’s definitely a celebration of women.  And just to clarify, this is NOT a male-bashing opportunity.  We love our male supporters and we want you guys to come out.  Just expect a lot of great art that’s going to be very different and it’s definitely going to be worth your time.

About this blog
Garron Gibbs is the owner and editor of ConcreteCakes.com, a publication that promotes entrepreneurship and professional artistry among urban youth. Reach Garron at ConcreteCakes@gmail.com.

Garron Gibbs for Philly.com
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