Talk about a shooting star. Gio Swaby, a Bahamian multimedia textile artist, earned her BFA in 2016. The very next year, she mounted a solo show at UNIT/PITT Society for Art & Critical Awareness in Vancouver, BC, where Swaby now lives. The 29-year-old is kicking off 2021 with similar brilliance: “Love Letters” is her exhibition of over a dozen new works at Claire Oliver Gallery in New York. “Medium is one of the last things I think about,” the artist, who studied painting, drawing, and ceramics as well as film and video, recently said. For her Pretty Pretty series, the medium is thread and cotton. “They reference female-centered activities like sewing, plus the concept of tradition, which is echoed in the theme of Black women passing down hair-care traditions for generations.” Swaby’s creations are, as noted in the exhibit’s title, a love letter to Black women’s style, strength, beauty, individuality, and humanity—and underscore joy and resilience overall.
In honor of Black History Month, the Interior Design team is spotlighting the narratives, works, and craft traditions of Black architects, designers, and creatives. See our full coverage here.