Delaney MeSun Shin is an interdisciplinary artist. Her work explores her layered identity rooted in being biracial, culture, and working with scientific microbiology. Born and raised in Minnesota, Delaney's visual inspiration is often rooted in the sciences as she explores her layered identity as a biracial individual. Taught in two-dimensional studies, she works with paper, challenging viewers to look beyond normal usage of the material. Her work has flowed from drawings, paintings, printmaking, and sculptural practices.
Delaney received her MFA at Bowling Green State University, with a concentration in two-dimensional studies and an emphasis on painting. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Stout, with a concentration in drawing and an art history minor. She currently teaches at Francis Marion University.
Delaney's artwork has been exhibited nationally. Awarded the Juror's Award in the recent Here, There and Nowhere: MFA Online Exhibition, from the University of Montana and Montana State University, where 50 works were selected out of 852 (a less than 6% acceptance rate). This past year her artwork has been selected for several Best In Shows, including Bowling Green State University's Diversity of Art: Art For the Public Good Juried Exhibition and in the national Creative Quarterly: Journal of Art and Design during the 70th Spring Issue and their 100 Best Artwork.
Back when tigers smoked the pipe is a phrase my grandparents are just as familiar with as I am with Once upon a time. These beginnings of folk stories have been lost and forgotten in many mixed-race families. Stories passed down orally connect strings of meaning inherited by the generations following. Heritage, rituals, and values compose these stories, shaping each generation's learning and understanding of their histories. Coming from two different cultural backgrounds, Asian and Caucasian, I grew up in a household that did not share common knowledge of the related cultural norms. I have often felt like an anomaly or white-passing minority in a liminal space of comfortable vulnerability. Still, I embrace and love my biracial heritage and want to share my interpretations with others who may find meaning in similar circumstances. Through hanging objects in open environments, drawings, and paintings, I share how my artwork is a way to explore the interconnections of feeling as if I'm not being fully seen and accepted.
My artwork creates a story of the relationship between transcultural fluidity and identity with paper as a predominant medium. Paper, a starting point for many artists' earliest creative encounters, acts as a conduit for our sketches, messages, and more. Paper acts as a shapeshifter with its physical ability to mold, fold, or sculpt. Shapeshifting is a characteristic that many multiracial individuals carry; shapeshifting between identifies with multiple and oftentimes concealed layers. When we can take time to understand the values of other individuals, more layers start to be unveiled. I invite viewers to reflect on their identities as they see how I have exposed the layers of my cultural heritage.