Artist Spotlight

Q&A with C.J. Shaw, fine arts student at EvCC

The Clipper’s Managing Editor of Visuals, Stacie McCartan, conducts a Q & A with C.J. Shaw, a student in the visual arts program at EvCC.

SM: What inspired you to become an artist? Is it a gift that you have always had?

CS: Growing up near Los Angeles and being in that environment allowed me to surround myself with very talented and inventive people which helped my interest in art develop. I wouldn’t call it a gift, I think my process and the way I go about making my work comes from acquired knowledge from teachers and friends.

SM: What type of art would you categorize yours to be?

CS: I think I would categorize my art as abstract expressionism or maybe minimalism

SM: What type of materials/ media do you use for your art?

CS: I’m concerned with form and color I borrow materials from reality, or sometimes reference things from reality, and distort them in some way by trying to divulge the misshapen quality of an object. I usually work in oils or acrylics on canvas, but sometimes I use found objects to create sculptures.

SM: Who inspires you? Any favorite artists that you look to?

CS: Right now I’m looking at Etel Adnan, Agnes Martin, and Kerry James Marshall a lot. The colors, forms, compositions, and ideas presented in their work are really inspiring to me.

The way we see corporeally is essentially influenced by our own disposition, physically, mentally and metaphysically.”

— C.J. Shaw

SM: What program are you taking at EVCC?

CS: I’m taking the Associates in Fine Arts program.

SM: What do you like about the program and is there a favorite instructor that you would like to mention?

CS: I like how there’s a lot of resources at the school in terms of what I want to do or make in my work. One of my favorite instructors would have to be Sandra Lepper. She’s very helpful when I have questions about my art or advice on where to take it and make it better.

SM: What are your plans after graduating EVCC?

CS: I plan on attending Columbia College Chicago and earning a BFA.

SM: What can you tell us about the art you have shared with us? (featured in slideshow below)

CS: The abstractions are about form, color, and texture and trying to create a conversation between the three. I think both sculptures are about distorting a three-dimensional object into something flat and then taking that flat object into something three dimensional again. The way we see corporeally is essentially influenced by our own disposition, physically, mentally and metaphysically.