Sylvie McClelland Art Figurative Painting Sylvie McClelland Art Figurative Painting Sylvie McClelland Art Figurative Painting Sylvie McClelland Art Figurative Painting

Sylvie McClelland, Empathy in Paris - Original Painting


Or $200.00 per month with Art Money | Inquire here

Sylvie McClelland
Empathy in Paris

20 x 24 inches
Oil on canvas


Sylvie attended California College of Arts and Crafts and the University of San Francisco for a Dual-Degree Bachelor of Fine Arts from 2000-04. They took a break from painting after college when their father passed away, resuming in 2016. They work primarily in oil paint in their San Francisco home studio.

"My background directly informs my identity and in turn, my paintings. I come from a working-class and ethnically/culturally mixed family. My father was a therapist and social worker and he worked to reconnect with his Native American roots and to heal the intergenerational trauma in our family. These struggles have found their way into my work. As I had to turn away from my own art-making in order to financially survive, it has been particularly important to explore the themes relating to why that was. These include psychology, family/relational stories, the experience of being mixed-race/cultural, and gender/queer identity. I’m fascinated by the stories people tell themselves about who they are and I use layered imagery to create an emotional mirror for the viewer. Because of my own past and identity, it is important to me to portray subjects that aren’t part of the mainstream art world, and the majority of my models come from “marginalized” backgrounds. Yet though my work is intimate and sensitive in theme, it is bold and brave in execution. The use of color is of great importance to me: I enjoy color and I have come to see that the use, even what might be considered the overuse of color, has been a reclaiming of the culture that was taken from my family through colonization and continued forced assimilation into mainstream culture."