Sharon L. Bjyrd, Local Artist Expressing Blackness
Sharon L. Bjyrd is best known for her vibrant portraits celebrating the beauty and diversity of the Black experience.
We first met Sharon when she entered and then won our 2021 UMOJA Impact Award from our Onward & Upward Artist Showcase Contest.
“I seek to honor the individuality of people of color and to depict the different ways we go about expressing our Blackness.”-Sharon L. Bjyrd
More About Sharon
Sharon was born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, moving to Madison in the early 90’s. She attended the University of Wisconsin, Madison, studying Social Work and Afro American studies and went on to work in the domestic violence field and serving women in poverty at organizations like the YWCA of Madison and the Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Self-taught, with a few classes along the way, Sharon entered the art world as a second passion after a life slowdown due to Lupus and sickle cell disease created the space to re-discover her love of art in the form of painting. Her medium of choice is acrylic paint, though she’s known to dabble in mixed media.
Sharon’s work has been featured: in the book “Let’s Talk About It, The Art, The Artists and The Racial Justice Movement on Madison’s State Street” 2021; as a mural at Madison Museum of Contemporary Art during the George Floyd riots 2020; “Bohemian Black” solo exhibit, Roberta Gallery, UW-Whitewater 2020; as an emerging artist at MMOCA ‘s Art Fair on the Square 2019; “Flowers in the Garden Exhibit” The South Side Community Art Center 2019, Chicago; Hatch Art House, Madison, WI and the Silver Room Block Party 100 Canvas Event in Chicago. She is currently one of four artists in the BridgeWork art accelerator program at Art Lit Lab in Madison.
Untitled. Brown #3”
This painting is third in a series entitled “Brown” that I’m working on. All of the pieces are monochromatic with different shades of our brown skin tone and feature a colorful head wrap representing our continued ties to African culture.