Sonia Shiel combines key methodologies from art and theatre to imbue characteristics, autonomy and fictional narratives in the works she creates. Usurping the normal conditions of an artwork with a kind of self-conscious agency usually reserved for living things, her works are often free-standing; traversable; presented with their own volition, backstory or environment; and sometimes consolidated within installations that use audio-work, live performance or video. Transcending traditional dimensionality, her painted works reveal the shape-shifts of a sentient landscape, in which reflections abandon their hosts, horizons up-sticks from their axis, gestural marks pose wilfully and light plays tricks before disappearing.
Sonia Shiel is an Irish visual artist, born in Dublin. Recent solo exhibitions include Supernatural Bureau, Kunstverein Aughrim (2023), The Dangers of Happy, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2021), I am What You've Come To See, Curated by Mary Cremin, VOID, Derry (2019), How The Oyster Makes the Pearl, Kevin Kavanagh, Dublin (2019), Rectangle Squared, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork (2017) and The Incomplete Platypus, Rua Red, Dublin (2016). Group exhibitions include The Glucksman, Cork; The Lexicon, Dublin; The Cable Factory, Helsinki; Kulturbunker, Frankfurt; and IMMA, Dublin. Sonia Shiel is a member of Temple Bar Gallery and Studios. She is represented by the Kevin Kavanagh Gallery, and supported by the Arts Council's Bursary and Project Awards 2022. Shiel is a Fellow of Fordham’s Art and Law Program, and an associate artist at UCD’s School of Drama.