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Sual by Shani Nizan, Pen on Paper, 19x27
Solo Exhibition 
July 31 - August 11, 2023
Opening Reception
Thursday, August 3, 6:00 - 9:00pm
Meet the Artist at Opening Reception
Artist Talk at 8:00pm 

Refreshing Expatriate Perspective of Shani Nizan Expressed Through Large Scale Ballpoint Pen Drawings, Exploring NYC Variety of Identities and Their Integration Into the Big City Jungle.


As an expatriate from Israel, Nizan found herself observing a new city and herself within it. The “jungle” that is New York City was an extreme change from the small village community where Shani grew up in. In her choice to use simple Bic pens and high-quality paper, as well as thin and aggressive pen strokes, she symbolizes an initial reflection of city life extremes: wealth and poverty, beauty and ugliness, order and chaos going together side by side and creating the art piece that is New York. The un-proportional creatures placed in everyday New York City scenes are suggestive of the inevitable need to adapt to a new social environment. This way, the viewer can feel that they are either observing the city from a high point of view or trying to find their place in it. As she mentioned in her statement, Shani always keeps a childish innocent atmosphere as the frame of the content in her artwork. Originally, this exhibition was called “Wishful Thinking” to create a visual fantasy that is typical to a child, where the artist is wishing her creatures to get big in their new home, New York. 


“As we are born, we are free beings gifted with the ability to find the utmost joy in the small things living in the moment through them.  As we get older and exposed to everyday life concerns, we have a tendency to detach from this pure state of mind that if kept, would maybe serve as a tool to deal with daily hardships. Through my art, I am looking to connect my audience and myself to that childlike feeling of innocence.״


Shani Nizan (born 1995), is an Israeli tattoo artist based in New York. She is best known for her 'Human-Animal' figures that she refers to as her 'Creatures'. Nizan was never trained as a formal painter, but she refined her skills by painting every day. At age 18, she joined the Israeli military as an educational NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) in the 601st Battalion of Combat Engineering. To pass the time during the long guarding duties, she would paint on her arm with a pen. The drawings went viral on Facebook and were applauded by an audience who believed they were tattoos. This sparked her tattooing career in 2017, and she studied under tattoo artist Anat Hetzrony. In 2018, Shani received a personal invitation from a leading art studio, owned by Julia Rehme in Berlin, for a permanent position. During that time, she simultaneously toured in Europe and was a guest artist in tattoo studios like Puro Milano, De l'Art ou Du Cochon in Paris, Through My Third Eye in London, Dots to Lines, and many others. After working for two years in Berlin, Shani moved to New York City. Shortly after, she returned to Israel due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In September 2020, She presented a solo exhibition "I Didn't Like Jazz" at Beit Haamudim in Tel Aviv. In 2021, Nizan founded "Drinking and Drawing NYC".  

Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan Artwork by Shani Nizan