Stephen Cunningham Artworkswww.ArtPal.com/scunningham
Stephen Cunningham is an American painter, writer, and graphic illustrator in his mid-twenties, currently living in Austin, Texas. He is one of three children; his mother was a U.S. diplomat, a profession which offered Stephen a global prospective to his life, having lived in Egypt, Mali, Kenya, El Salvador, Bangladesh, Jordan, and Thailand. Throughout his travels, Stephen would be inspired by local cultures and world histories. He is influenced by Egyptian and Greco-Roman mythology, Christianity, and other Mediterranean religions.
Despite selling his first oil-based painting at age twelve, or support by his family, peers, and teachers of his artwork, Stephen never considered himself an artist in his youth. He doubted his own artistic abilities and did not believe he could acquire a livable means of income through art. To him, art was only a form of personal, emotional expression rather than craft to be shared publicly.
The influence of his travels on Stephen’s art is evident; while inspirational, having never established roots—in addition to being told that his dyslexia would hinder his growth within school and society—contributed to a personal sense of exclusion and low self-esteem, despite the support of his family and that of educators who knew him best. His distorted sense of self would lead Stephen to take on odd jobs, diligently searching for purpose within those vocations, but he never stopped writing and creating works of art in his spare time. Stephen eventually grew tired of social expectations and the perceived limitations of his dyslexia, stating, “what drives others doesn’t seem to drive me. I gravitate toward creating through observing and documenting the world around me, rather than being a part of the social construct that is modern society. I’ve played the game and learned my interests are different.” This realization—along with the support of his community—would spur his desires to fully invest in his art, with hopes of inspiring creativity, experiencing diversity, and building the courage to attempt spiritual and metaphysical transcendence.
Totem Animal Collection
Artemis Bes Collection