Shannon Bono (b.1995) is a visual artist, MA Art & Science graduate from Central Saint Martins (2019) and an Associate Lecturer at Central Saint Martins living and working in London.
Shannon identifies as an Afrofemcentrist, a term that describes a consciousness that asserts race, sex and art as a way of living, where black women are the subject depicted by black women. As a painter, Shannon is invested in producing layered figurative compositions embedded with symbolism that centralises black womanhood as a source of knowledge and understanding. She is enamoured by African spiritually and takes inspiration from Christian iconography and the renaissance art employing its purposes of cultural impact, liturgy and instruction for an improved society. Exploring the internal parts of the body, she goes back to her scientific educational background and merges the design of notable fabrics from west and central Africa with biological structures and chemical processes in living organisms. She uses the body to act as a second canvas, including surrealist cues to work as ‘artivisms’ (art+activism) against oppressive forces, share muted narratives and celebrate black female culture. She views the body as a powerful signifier that provokes dialogue, playing with pose, gesture and the gaze to change reality.
Shannon’s group exhibitions include Central Saint Martin’s Degree Show One 2019, SGFA (Sound, Gender, Feminism, and Activism) Tokyo conference, Tate Exchange ‘Come Together’, Feminist Library ‘Archiving the feminist experience’ and the Koppel Project Central Gallery ‘Xhibit 2019’ showcasing the best creative talent from UAL. She has also exhibited at the Copeland Gallery ‘The State of Things’ , Imperial College London ‘The Colour of Pain’ raising awareness for Sickle Cell Anaemia and the Lee Alexander McQueen Sarabande Foundation. Her work has been featured in the 0.1% publication ‘Genomics, Race, Gender Politics through scientific research’, I-Science magazine, Dazed Magazine and online press by Elephant Magazine, Wallpaper Magazine, Bustle, i-D and Soho House.