why I make art​​​​​​

Through my work, I try to push through the walls of my daily anxiety as well as the loud noise created by the chaotic world around me that's helped generate that anxiety. I also attempt to break out of molds that society has assigned to Iranian women and women in general. From using bright colors to bold, assertive facial expressions and implementing the unexpected combination of charcoal and paint, I find ways to step outside the endless loop of constricted thinking. I hope my pieces show that the definition of what it means to be a woman or Iranian woman is not singular. Personally, my goal is also to get as close as I can to seeing myself clearly and without outside filters through the fierce, unapologetic women I create in my portraits.
about me

Hi, I'm Shirene, meaning "sweet" or "pleasant" in Farsi. I was born and raised in the Seattle area by two lovely Iranian humans. My mom's side of the family has had oil painters, guitar players and other creative thinkers, and since childhood I always needed an outlet for my intense energy, so art has been a big part of my life. Because I'm a restless hummingbird, when I'm not making portraits I'm also pursuing my UX/UI design career and working as the Volunteer Curator and Gallery Manager at the Julian Peña Gallery. The first exhibit I curated, Home Away From Home, highlights the experience of growing up in the U.S. and abroad while being of Middle Eastern descent. In my free time, I listen to Nirvana on high volume, take morning walks on paths that lead to coffee shops and lovingly smother my cat, Simba.
upcoming exhibitions​​​​​​ & events

Tractor Tavern Makers Market (Seattle, WA), December 12, 2021
past exhibitions​​​​​​ & events

Art/Not Terminal Gallery (Seattle, WA), 2012
Pittsburgh Lunch & Superette (Seattle, WA), 2017
Cafe Cesura (Bellevue, WA), 2017
Wheelhouse Coffee (Seattle, WA), 2017
Freshy's (Seattle, WA), May 2018
CoCA (Center on Contemporary Art) (Seattle, WA), May 2018
CoCA (Center on Contemporary Art) (Seattle, WA), March 7 - April 20, 2019
Elliott Bay Brewing Company (Burien, WA), April 2019
Third Culture Coffee (Bellevue, WA), June 201
Chophouse Row’s Art Walk (Seattle, WA), August & September 2019
Belltown Art Fair (Seattle, WA), October 3, 2019
Tractor Tavern Makers Market (Seattle, WA), November 10, 2019
Punk Rock Flea Market (Seattle, WA), December 7, 2019
Holiday RAWk 2019 (Seattle, WA), December 12, 2019
Holiday Pop-Up at Anthem Coffee (Puyallup, WA), December 21, 2019
Harper’s Hair Studio (Seattle, WA), February - April 2020
Belltown Art Walk (Seattle, WA), Virtual Art Exhibition Oct. 12 - 19, 2020
Sassafras (Seattle, WA), Virtual Exhibition Nov. 13 - Dec. 7; Instagram Showcase Nov. 13 - 20, 2020
Julian Peña Gallery (Seattle, WA), March 4 - 26, 2021
Tractor Tavern Makers Market (Seattle, WA), August 8, 2021
Julian Peña Gallery (Seattle, WA), August 5 - Mid-September (date TBD), 2021 (as curator)
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