Trevor Shin is a Dallas-based illustrator. He is one of the participating artists for the Fierce Tidings art exhibition (March 31 - May 12) at the Gene Siskel Film Center in conjunction with the FAAIM 22nd Annual Asian American Showcase which runs March 31st through April 12th, 2017. We asked him a few questions about his work and artistic practice!
-Does your identity or how you identify yourself inform your work in any way?
My identity informs almost everything about my life. Growing up bi-racially was interesting, I was aware of race at a very young age. I saw the world from two simultaneous perspectives while never fully being accepted into either group. As a perpetual outsider, I was constantly observing the world around me from the outside looking in. I believe this way of thinking and observing heavily influence my thinking and way of seeing the world.
-When making your work, do you have certain expectations or do you aim for a specific reaction in your audience and the viewer? (Do you care about how the message of your work is received?)
Mostly I try and forget anyone is going to be looking at the work at all. It stresses me out and I feel it makes the work seem disingenuous. I don't mind if someone misinterprets my work as they are bringing their own life experience to the table.
-Does art serve a purpose for you outside of just beauty or aesthetics?
There is something so satisfying about making marks and letting lines flow right out of your hand. Art is therapeutic for me and a great tool for continual growth as a human being. Art has made me more empathetic.
-How do current events affect your practice?
Current events make me hyper aware of race and inclusivity. I try and avoid pointing out the differences between people and focus on universal aspects of humanity.
-Do you feel you are more reactive or more reflective when you create?
My work is reflective. I'm constantly filtering the world around me and trying to make the best sense of it that I can.