BBM: Ellex Swavoni takes futuristic Black women to space with her Atlantis Rising sculptures

Ellex Swavoni’s scientific, space-like, unburdened sculptures imagine a world in which Black people are free from the distortions of history. Swavoni is the creator of Atlantis Rising, a life-size sculpture and sci-fi monument that is currently located at the dock at Atlanta’s Goat Farm. The purple statue can be intimidating at first sight because its head and torso alone stand […]

Ellex Swavoni’s scientific, space-like, unburdened sculptures imagine a world in which Black people are free from the distortions of history. Swavoni is the creator of Atlantis Rising, a life-size sculpture and sci-fi monument that is currently located at the dock at Atlanta’s Goat Farm. The purple statue can be intimidating at first sight because its head and torso alone stand 8-feet-tall. Swavoni used industrial foam and polyurethane clay with an armature and a steel base.
“Atlantis Rising is a project that I did with dashboard in late 2020. It was an art piece that’s based on the power of black women and it was based on characters like Galactics,” said Swavoni. “I just wanted to make something that looked like it was emerging out of the earth like it was an ancient thing that was already there.”
Swavoni grew up in Louisville, KY., moving to Atlanta when her family decided to relocate. She is currently working on a series that empowers people by creating the conditions of love, using fantasy, design, and music. Her style has become synonymous with ancient spirituality and graphic design. She uses her love for toy design and sculpting to capture and translate her experiences into future ancient symbols, music, and minimal abstract works. Swavoni’s artistic practice began when she was seven years old. Throughout the years, she taught herself the art of sculpting, mold making, and other home manufacturing techniques.
“I was making things like spaceships,” said Swavoni. “That space and whimsical energy has trickled down to the work that I’m doing right now.”
Looking at her sculpted figures can feel like being in space with powerful black women and men who are futuristic in style–the hair and the clothing. Lawson’s sculptures are solid in stature. If one was lost in space and saw a person who looks like Atlantis Rising, they’d attach themselves to her to feel safe.
“It is the responsibility of artists to translate the human experience into things that the senses can accept even if the mind can’t comprehend. This viewpoint informs her spiritual imagery and Future Ancient style,” said Swavoni. “The Future Ancient style utilizes the visual language from religions across the diaspora to project modern ideologies into the realm of divinity.”
Swavoni makes art for art collectors, working directly with collectors to create images of their desire. To buy from Swavoni or to learn more about her, visit www.ellexswavoni.com.


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