Artist bio

To rise to one’s full potential, we must first recognize the amassed identity that we share with generations before us, generations now, and those yet to come. Art has always been a way for me to connect to the unapologetic woman deep within me. My artwork focuses on the critical view towards women of color, African diaspora, cultural identity, historical and environmental preservation within African American culture. Through visual arts, I can express the hidden qualities of my spirit and share my vision. It benefits my womanhood by allowing me to direct my narrative and interpretation of the world around me. I aspire to educate myself, my daughter, and our society that representation matters within the arts.





Artist Statement

Cardboard allows my vision to come to life through the manipulation of this recyclable component.This mixed media sculpture aids in expressing the hidden qualities of my spirit, the ability to find my own language and connection to God. It benefits my personhood by allowing me to direct my own narrative and my interpretation of the world around me. As a result the organic material is transformed well beyond its everyday function, forming a complex, multilayered female figure.

How it fits into contest

“Makeda” is a self-portrait of me and my lost spiritual narrative. This sculpture represents my gospels truths of my journey as someone’s daughter, mother, as an artist and a USN veteran. I found through my journey my strength alone was not enough to endure life’s obstacles. Through my conversations and prayers to God I found wisdom and knowledge. I now know I should not rely on my own strength but, on the power of God to fight my battles. My inner solider who was once a prisoner of war, is gifted the breastplate of righteousness to protect my vulnerable heart. Through these moments I find myself embracing the world around me with my eyes closed, just like the sculpture. Always remembering God is with me every step of the way of my journey.


Artist: Shayna Sutton

Submit Your Artwork Today!

Curious? Interested in submitting artwork to our contest? Know someone who might be? Through April 14th, 2022, the Engage Art Contest is open to the whole world! Get your foot in the door by claiming your Artist Page now!