From the Artist: In this body of work, I am both the artist and the subject. It exists at the intersection of femininity, fertility, sexuality, destruction and personal freedom, as I uncover the fragility, strength, power and beauty of the female spirit and form.

Over a decade ago, I was told that it would not be possible to conceive children without medical intervention. While my individual journey has always influenced my work, I had never explored this life event in my art. The stillness, solitude and slower pace of the quarantine opened the door to finally confront these internalized yet unprocessed feelings.

I wanted to make work centered on my story, where I contemplate what it means to be a woman. I started to create these figures, drawing myself surrounded by poppies. Though poppies are a fragile flower, they symbolize peace, rest and resurrection and they are rooted in strength.The poppy embodied how I felt as I started to truly understand the enormity of my experience with IVF as well as the moment we are living during this pandemic.

As women, we are often influenced and shaped by societal expectations, but as we get older, we are forced to face our own truths and construct our individual paths. By taking the time to reflect on my personal journey during the quarantine, I relinquished the weight of my experiences to unlearn what I felt defined me as a woman. Soon the figures stopped being me and they morphed into the collective Woman--mystical, unconforming and strong. These boldly colorful and layered works reveal a window into a world where things are slightly enigmatic and not as they seem. The unknown nature of the subject incorporates a dynamic tension in the works that falls in and out of reach. They are a window and a mirror.


  • Title: We're Dreaming III
  • Creator: Monica Shulman
  • Date Created: 21st Century
  • Location Created: New York, USA
  • Physical Dimensions: 24"x20"
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil Paint and Oil Pastel

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