Amanda (they/them) is a neurodiverse, queer, Chinese-Canadian, recovering perfectionist and empathic human based in Toronto. Their mental health journey has influenced their drive to destigmatize me... ntal illness and support creative expression.
Amanda’s artistic practices include their vibrant paintings of footwear, and black and white ink drawings of Emotional Maps through which they explore self-expression and acceptance, stigmas, and human connection. Amanda’s work has been shown at group exhibitions, in publications, and they have been invited to lead workshops and artist talks. They created there as one of STEPS Initiative's national CreateSpace BIPOC Public Art Residency and is featured as one of five Workman Arts artists taking up themes of mental health awareness and advocacy in art galleries and museums at the Art Gallery of Ontario.
You can also see Amanda at film festivals, podcasts and workshops as an Active Listener, on mental health committees for the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), University of British Columbia, and facilitating Movies for Mental Health for Art With Impact Canada.
The painting is from Amanda’s Footwear series as a form of exploration of sexual and gender expression. The paintings invite the viewer to question their assumptions on gender performance. Using colour to form the experience, Amanda takes found fashion photography of footwear and adds to the style and colour to create these acrylic paintings.
The paintings showcase people’s legs and footwear in different skin tones and body sizes to highlight how we cannot assume the life of the person in the shoes. Vibrate is the first short heeled painting from the series.