Being Black, Making Art: A Collection of Work and A Thesis
Sarah Kanu
Sarah Kanu (she/they) is an illustrator and fine artist with a BFA in Illustration & a Minor in Social Justice.

She was born and raised in Abuja, Nigeria; Dallas, Texas & currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.

They are passionate about printmaking and collage, with digital aid when needed. Utilizing those tools, their graphic, raw & textured illustrations bring their work - driven by social concepts & non-fiction narratives - to life.

Since being at Pratt, she's served as BSU President and Equity and Inclusion Chair on Student Government, hosted several in-person and online events, and worked to bring a Black Studies Minor to the school.
USA Women's World Cup Win Linocut Print // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Polyamory: Pro or Con? Linocut Print // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Bong Joon Ho's Parasite Linocut Prints // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Environmental Degradation - Fire // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Environmental Degradation - Water // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Series of Original Collages // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Series of Original Collages // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
Series of Original Collages // 2020
By Sarah Kanu
My Backyard // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
At the Pink House // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Tend to a Garden // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Pool Day // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Mancala on the Concrete // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Sister in Field // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Monotype - My Backyard // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Monotype 2 - My Backyard and Symbols of Cycles // Thesis 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Artist Statement
Although this site holds a wide range of work, the writing below speaks to my thesis.

"We as black artists have not had the luxury of just being artists,” - David Driskell in The Color Line; Baltimore Magazine.

The bulk of my thesis puts the above statement - packed in this intersection of race, creativity, nuance, and self-/determination - into practice.

Going in three directions - linocut, collage, and a student-focused community panel - to build on my creative practice and tackle what it means to be a Black illustrator in the United States.

With the series of collages, I intended to not answer the question in content but context. That the act of creating need not be hellbent on articulating a political or social stance to represent me and my Blackness. The original intent was spontaneity as a reclamation form. And though the process I use to create collages is intuitive more than anything, the content became intentionally about representing Black joy and nature.

My collages are not only a tribute to the whole idea of Black joy in connection to the land but are a direct memorialization of my home and a reckoning with its temporality - either as a result of time or the violent economic realities of this nation.
Being Black Making Art | Student Panel Event
Being Black, Making Art is a zoom event hosted by Sarah Kanu (she/they) to uplift fellow Black creatives as a wrap-up to their semester thesis.
By Sarah Kanu
Being Black, Making Art Further Learning Document
Lectures, Readings, and Shared Experiences That Resonated with me in Conversation w/ My Thesis over Spring 2021
By Sarah Kanu
Developing a Black Studies Minor: FA '20
Here we have the final presentation I gave for the FA '20 semester progress on this initiative. As of SP '21, myself and several faculty worked to complete the Minor which I hope will be offered come FA '21.
By Sarah Kanu