AD 227 | Shantell Martin
“Drawing Outside The Lines”

Shantell Martin is one of today’s most groundbreaking multimedia artists. Known for her ongoing exploration of the vast potential of the spontaneous hand-drawn lines, below the surface of her signature black and white drawing is an exploration of the reciprocal relationship between artist and viewer, in which a work of art is more than an object of admiration. Exploring themes such as intersectionality, identity, and play, Shantell is a cultural facilitator, forging new connections between fine art, education, design, philosophy, and technology.

Simultaneously with her work as a fine artist, exhibiting at institutions such as Albright-Knox, the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, and MoMa, Shantell’s practice continuously pushes the boundaries of creative expression through thoughtful, innovative collaborations with artists, brands, and cultural institutions such as Pulitzer Prize-winning performance artist Kendrick Lamar, acclaimed designer Kelly Wearstler, the New York City Ballet, Tiffany & Co., and Nike. Shantell is also fascinated with the relationships between storytelling, visual art, and technology. She is an adjunct professor at NYU Tisch ITP (Interactive Telecommunications Program) and completed a two-year tenure at an MIT Media Lab as a visiting Scholar, where she worked with the social computing group to use drawing as a medium to explore the interaction of social processes with physical spaces.

Topics Discussed In This Episode:
  • Tapping into child-like sensibilities as an adult
  • Moving from darkness into light
  • Creating artwork with a “good intention”
  • “What if we asked all children, who are you at the core, instead of what do you want to be?” - Shantell Martin
  • Letting go of societal baggage in order to create our own way
  • Creating purpose
  • Spontaneously creating artwork
  • Drawing and how it can have an impact on one’s mental health
  • Physically drawing vs. drawing digitally
  • Expressing one’s self through various mediums, not being restricted by a single medium
  • “Kites”by Martin with the Boston Ballet, ChoreograpHER
  • “The Importance of Conversation” by Martin, an NFT Project in collaboration with Nifty Gateway
  • “You are where you are meant to be”, Martin’s personal affirmation to herself
  • “Does progress really exist, or is it the scenery that changes?” - Shantell Martin
  • Having existential thoughts
  • The power of making and sharing
  • Finding herself when she moved to Japan from the UK in the early 2000s
  • “There’s a freedom in being lost in the sense that you get to discover and find yourself.” - Shantell Martin
  • The perspective of success and failure in Taoism

Posted 2.7.2022


"I started this series as a means for exploration, an exploration of self, and an exploration of the perspectives of other artists.

This series is an unabridged documentation of conversations between artists. It’s a series dedicated to breaking down the barriers we tend to set up in our own minds. I want to inspire future creatives to have the courage to explore and experiment. This is about making dreams a reality and not about letting our dreams fall to the wayside.

My intention is to give my audience a sense of real human connection, something that feels rich and organic.

When I was thinking of a title I thought of the word “movement”.

In relation to the Renaissance period in art, my goal for this program is to signify a rebirth of consciousness towards the way we look at contemporary art."

- Yoshino