We had the good fortune of connecting with Jessica Soltis and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jessica, career-wise, where do you want to be in the end?
The end goal is to see more positive representation of black women in the world of art while promoting the importance of self love. Positive representation in your field of work is so important because it changes the lives of people. Most people do not know what is possible until they see it. I did not know it was possible for me to make a living as an artist until I met another black artist, Denyse Thomasos. It is my duty to pay it forward so that other young women can feel the same sense of belonging and empowerment in the world of art.
My end goal is to also break these unrealistic stereotypes that black women are faced with. Many of us feel like we have to be strong, powerful and the head of our households while other races of women are allowed to rest in their femininity. Black women are told that showing emotion and depending on someone is a sign of weakness. I find so much power in my femininity. I find strength in my vulnerability. I find power in being delicate. I find power in sitting and thinking. I find so much power in just being. Society tries to tell women that we are not enough and we have to try to be anything else but ourselves. There is so much power is being a woman.
My mother is the perfect example of a feminine woman that found power in who she was. Society puts black women in boxes. Black women are beautiful, talented, classy and elegant. We are the creators of earth and life. I want to encourage other women that the only person they need to be is themselves; that is your super power. When you have self love, you are unstoppable!
Thank you so much
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
The hardest thing I have ever done was bet on myself. While taking a chance on myself, I found my purpose. I am not existing, I am living. My artwork is truly a labor a love. I wake up and go to bed dreaming of my paintings. After 7-11 layers of acrylic paint, I follow that with sequins and glitter. Several of my painting have 11,000+ sequins that are individually hand sewn. Humans are not meant to live forever but I am creating art that will.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Visit the Broad Museum, Eat and hang out at The Belvidere in Beverly Hills, Walk and take pictures on Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills and go to a pool party at the W in Hollywood.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would like to thank my art Professor Thomasos. May she rest in Paradise.