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Rising Stars: Meet Elizabeth Sloas

Today we’d like to introduce you to Elizabeth Sloas.

Hi Elizabeth, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I have always been a creative person, even as a child I was drawing, painting, or doing other small crafts. It was so ingrained within myself and my personal identity that I often have a hard time pinpointing when I started “creating”. Unlike many other artists, I did not grow up in an artistic household. My family is made up of people in the healthcare and education fields, so my passion for creating seemed to come as a surprise.

It wasn’t until the age of 11 I really dived into creating and worked consistently to better my techniques and skills as an artist. This is all due to my elementary art school teacher, Mary Ann Ray. I owe my entire art career to her. If it wasn’t for her encouragement and years of teaching me I do not think that I would be the painter I am today.

From there I continued to work on my own with some additional help from Mary Ann Ray. Eventually, in high school, I decided that I wanted to make a career out of being creative. That was when I discovered Savannah College of Art and Design. I’m from a small town in Arkansas, so going to an art school was seen as outlandish to many people there. However, I persisted and made my way here to Savannah, GA. I fell in love with the town and figured out my own style in and out of the classroom.

My work soon became a reflection of myself and my life, inadvertently converging my love for stories with the lack of female representation we see throughout history. I grew up in a family of strong and independent women so it was no wonder that my subject matter mostly displayed the female figure. That combined with my love for reading and stories is what has created my style today.

Moving forward, I would like to expand my practice, creating larger and more detailed narrative scenes and work on cultivating my own practice.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It has certainly not been a smooth road for me. I’ve struggled with anxiety and depression for most of my life and finding the balance between that and life can be difficult. My shyness and anxiety have held me back from a lot, but I try not to let them get the best of me. While it has been hard it has also given me some insight into the world.

There is so much that you can learn by simply observing the world and by watching and listening. I think that is why I am so interested in the visual arts. There is so much a painting can tell you without having to utter a single word. My work helps me to speak and to express my own opinions while also giving me room to change and grow.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am a painter that works mainly in oil and I create medium- to larger-scale narrative paintings. My work heavily features the female form with a focus on highlighting a female-based narrative. The series I am working on now is titled “Shakespeare’s Fallen Women”. Within this series, I explore the concept of fallen women as it relates to the female characters in Shakespeare’s tragedies.

From the watery death of Ophelia to the terrible murder of Desdemona, I want to explore the inner rage and emotions of these often neglected characters. Specifically, I wanted to use these characters to explore the concept of being “fallen” or “falling from grace”, even when you look up the definition for the term fallen you get two very different answers. The first definition relates specifically to women, aligning them with synonyms such as depraved, immoral, and sinful.

However, the second definition says, fallen, a soldier who died in battle. This definition is filled with words such as, killed, murdered, and slain. These two definitions were clearly gendered in their usage and have been for centuries. There is also an incredible lack of female representation within Shakespeare’s plays with male roles outnumbering female roles 7:1. It was this term “fallen” in combination with an extremely well-known work of literature that is patriarchal in nature that lead me to create this series of paintings.

I want to highlight the female- narrative within my work and alter how we use the term “fallen”. I want to portray these strong female characters not as depraved or sinful, but as fallen soldiers in their own right. This is a series that I am very proud of and one that has continued to inspire me.

Where do you see things going in the next 5-10 years?
I hope that in the future the art world continues to become more diversified, with museums, galleries, and other art institutions seeking to expand their exhibitions beyond the cis-white-male point of view. I am definitely seeing a slow change as artists that are in the minority are starting to rise.


  • Lady Macbeth, oil on canvas, 30″ x 40″, $1200
  • A Portrait of Juliet, oil on canvas, 16″ x 20″, $550,
  • Cleopatra, oil on canvas, 36″ x 46″, $1600

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