Shani Peters is a New York based artist (born in Lansing, MI) working in video, collage, printmaking, and social practice public projects. Her work reflects interests in social justice oriented collective action, historical movements, cultural record keeping, media culture and community building. Peters completed her B.A. at Michigan State University and her M.F.A. at The City College of New York. She has exhibited and/or screened internationally, including group shows at the Bronx Museum of Art, The Contact Theatre (UK), Rush Arts Gallery, The Savannah College of Art & Design, the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), and the Schomburg Center for Black Culture and Research. She has completed multiple residencies including programs hosted by Project Row Houses and the Visual Arts Network, apexart to Seoul, S. Korea, the Lower East Side Printshop The Center for Book Arts, The Lower Manhattan Cultural Counsel, as well as the Bronx Museum of Art's Artist in the Marketplace program. Peters has taught extensively throughout her Harlem community as a educator and program designer working in New York Public Schools, Harlem Textile Works, Casita Maria Arts Education Inc., The Laundromat Project, and as a social justice arts education adjunct lecturer at The City College of New York. This summer Peters will be a Create Change Public Artist in Residence with The Laundromat Project.
I am interested in collective action, in activism histories, and in reinterpreted methods of cultural record keeping. My work examines social injustice of the past in the context of contemporary culture and living conditions, and re-presents them in manners consciously influenced by a hyper-mediated society. My perspective is heavily informed by my family and by the historical era in which I live. I was born into the “me” generation of the socially conservative 1980s by way of faithful Black Power era parents who live by a mantra of social responsibility. I draw from the intersections of these influences and utilize varying tactics of contemporary media culture to produces work dense with historical research, appropriated material (both highly recognizable and commonly overlooked), contradictory notions, and new narratives of unseen victory. I layer concepts and references through video, print, and public projects in an attempt to push back my own program- a new account, or record of existence.