Serena Viola Corson is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in San Francisco, California. She was born in 1996 on the coast of North Carolina but moved all around the Southern United States growing up with her single mom due to financial instability and the 2009 recession.
Working within the esoteric art movement, I believe creating art is a form of manifestation. I believe painting pulls ideas into reality like magic, a tradition as old as time. I'm interested in connecting to my ancestors and the earliest known artists in my work (creators of Newgrange carvings and the bison painted in Lascaux) by incorporating their symbolism and continuing this sacred tradition of mark making.
"This idea of summoning matter by pulling it out of the ether is hinted at in the [Irish] word léir, which means 'visible', 'manifest', and 'clear' but also 'destruction', 'ruin' and 'woe', as though acknowledging that making things solid or visible in this dimension is a temporary act that invariably leads to their eventual ruin." - Magan, Thirty-two Words for Field
Growing up poor with a single mother in the USA, I learned the importance of community and sought refuge in alternative forms of love, rather than the nuclear family unit. Many of my paintings depict scenes of platonic love and radical oddkin (a term coined by feminist theorist Donna Haraway). The figures I paint are always uncensored, revealing blemishes, tummy rolls, and pubic hair, and are either self-references or inspired by my community. My focus on intimate friendship spans across mediums, from paintings that feel like a warm group hug to a yearly celebration I host called "Manifestations of Love," a pagan celebration of platonic love. This event serves as performance art, ritual, manifestation, and prefigurative politics. I am interested in the mysterious aspect of the human condition, the feelings we can all relate to but cannot be translated into words or data points. I believe it is the artist, musician, and poet's job to dance around this sacred truth but never fully grasp it.
"Magic is the miraculous and the mundane," - David Kubrin, Marxism and Witchcraft
My interest in painting still lifes ramped up during the global pandemic when everyone was isolated at home surrounded by their accumulating personal possessions. Each painting intentionally curates pairings of books and belongings, evoking a narrative reflective of my personal experience, some I even consider to be self-portraits. While my art mainly deals with daunting issues, such as isolation culture and global patriarchal capitalism, I hope my work, with its bright colors and playful patterns, retains an uplifting sense of joy, immediacy, and wonder.