Lindsay Dawn: The Unhealthy Perception Of The Female Body In Modern Society

Lindsay Dawn is a Canadian self-taught artist living and working in Los Angeles; She began painting figurative work in her early teens. Her paintings reflected a fusion of her training and experience over time. In her current body of work, she seeks to question the unhealthy perception of the female body in modern society.

A cocktail of aesthetic notions informs Dawn’s practice as she depicts the female body in an abstract form. Her camouflaged spectrums stay true to her artistic intentions. Amid a flurry of riotous spraypaint, vivid backdrops are abstract muses in intimate positions shrouded by fragments of street art, from tag styled phrases to painted motifs, overtly emit a psychedelic curiosity for the observer.

Lindsay Dawn

I have always had a fascination with painting the female body and the human anatomy. This stems from me coming to terms with my own body and the human experience

Lindsay Dawn

Dawn gained notoriety in 2021 with her sold-out solo show Lawless Reflections at ARUSHI Gallery in Los Angeles, owned by Gallerist Arushi Kapoor, her work also garnered the attention of a string of famous collectors, including LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, and Kylie Jenner. 

In this interview, we talk to Dawn about how she got started in arts and her upcoming NFT project, Shama Shorties. 

Q: Hi Lindsay, can you please introduce yourself for those who don’t know you?

A: I am a Canadian artist best known for my depiction of the female body that I combine with other styles. I started painting the human body specifically in my early teens and have since explored many styles, which I try to reflect in my current paintings. I love to work in various mediums from oil, acrylic, airbrush, and spray paint to pastel, marker, and pencil while primarily working on canvas.

Installation view: Lindsay Dawn, Lawless Reflections at ARUSHI
Photo Credit: Mara Friedman
Q: Can tell us why you decided to become an artist and how you got started in arts?

A: I was always interested in art and anything creative for as long as I can remember. It was always my dream to be an artist since I was a child — so I think it was inevitable. Even if I had thoughts of other career paths, it was just a temporary plan until I was in a position to paint full time. Painting and creating have been the most consistent thing in my life. It was never really a decision for me and more like the only option, so as for getting started I just never stopped.

‘LILO’ (2021)
Q: Can you tell us how you develop your style?

A: It took years for me to really let go of the idea of what a “style” of painting was, and I think that’s what actually helped my develop my style. For the longest time, I had insecurities when people would ask me what style I painted in because I was trying to check a box. Then I realized that I could create a new box per se, so even now, it’s hard for me to describe my painting style. But I can say that it’s a cumulation of years of exploring and attempting to master different techniques.

Lindsay Dawn In the studio
Q: Your practice is focused on the female body, expressed through a fusion of abstraction with the underlying essence of street art. Can you tell us the inspiration behind this?

A: I have always had a fascination with painting the female body and the human anatomy. This stems from me coming to terms with my own body and the human experience. This initial investigation transformed into something with a bigger purpose.

‘Bella’ (2021)

As for the abstraction and other elements, each has come from a different period of experimentation. I have always been fascinated by abstract art and its ability to evoke so much with colour and composition. Every element you see in my work is inspired by my life experiences and a few of my favourite artists.

Lindsay Dawn And Arushi Kapoor
Q: You have an upcoming NFT project titled “Shama Shorties”, which aims to provide support for victims impacted by human trafficking. Can you provide us with some more insight into the project?

A: My art dealer & gallerist Arushi Kapoor and I decided we wanted to dive into the NFT space by creating our own project. So, naturally, we decided to use my work as the inspiration for the project, combining some of the consistent elements you find in my physical pieces with new ideas for an animated, characterized version of my work. That’s how Shama Shorties was born – it is a collection of 5,555 unique NFTS.

We will be minting in mid-May. Each member will gain VIP access to art events and shows worldwide, exclusive print releases, and early access to collectables and merchandise from myself and other artists.

We will also be donating a percentage of the profits to a community voted organization that supports and provides resources for women and children who are current and past victims of human trafficking.

Q: The studio is the sacred temple of creativity. What are three things you can’t live without in your studio?

A: Music, a foam roller and headphones.

Q: Lastly, what does art mean to you? 

A: Everything!

©2022 Lindsay Dawn, Mara Friedman