top of page

AS IS | Jackie Slanley


From Texas, US

Based in New York City, US

Jackie creates dynamic and layered sculptures whose common themes are storytelling and symbolism. Her main source of inspiration are mythological stories from all over the world whose imagery she reimagines and re-contextualises in her own portrayal of flora, fauna, monsters, and environments in order to tell her own story

A: Please, tell us a bit more about yourself. What brought you into art?

J: I think spending a lot of time alone as a child brought me into art. My family was always working long hours and I had the apartment to myself almost all the time. I had to keep myself occupied somehow. I read books, made mixtapes, and drew.

A: What inspires you the most?

J: Mythology. I grew up with my grandma teaching me Buddhist stories. It was so cool. The most famous one, the one that most westerners would know, is called “Journey to the West.” These fictitious stories thought me everything that I needed to know about how to be a good person. The symbology in it is so beautiful and ancient. The images have been used over and over again, mutated, and rebirthed so many times. I see it appear the most on people’s skin, tattoos.

I want to be a part of the history of keeping those symbols alive with my work. I consider myself a participant in world-building. My sculptures are stand-ins and a representation of the characters that exist in that world. I use a wide range of materials from clay, wood, and paper, to plastics. Lately, my work has shifted almost completely to digital applications. In order to make my most recent sculptures out of Plexiglass, I use a laser cutter. This method of working allows me to pull images from ancient scrolls and archives and manipulate them directly.

A: Do you have any specific rituals while working(creating)?

J: Music and vibing for the whole studio session until I pass out.

A: What would you recommend to someone who's new to art (whether an artist or just an admirer), what to begin with?

J: A James Turrell installation… preferably one in the desert. The experience should be holy in the beginning. It was for me and it hooked me.

A: What are your three favorite adjectives related to art?

J: Diligent, brave, loud.

A: The best angle to look at art is from ______?

J: All angles, sculpture baby.

A: The perfect phrase to start any conversation about art is: _____?

J: That’s hot.

A: Must-read books to help us talk about art (or do we even need them)?

J: We definitely need books! However, l believe every artist has their own books that inspire them, that they hold dear. If we all read the same books, we would make similar things, which would be a problem. The best way to talk about art is just to talk about it. Describe what you see and what it makes you think and feel. Pieces that have a lot of giving will breed good conversation.

A: If you could change one thing in the art world - what would it be?

J: There’s so much that needs to change. If I had to choose one, I would make art education free, with a stipend. I want our society to respect artists and what we do as a community. It needs to be more inclusive. Artists and creatives deserve the best. The starving artist stereotype infuriates me.

A: Please, share your favorite quote (not necessarily related to art).

J: These violent delights lead to violent ends.

Thank you!

For more: visit or IG


bottom of page