A first-generation American artist of Afro-Caribbean descent, Sonya Clark was born in Washington, DC in 1967. Her interest in craft was inspired by her grandmother, a professional tailor, and her family taught her the importance of storytelling, which translated into her work as it addresses race, class, and culture. She studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and later the Cranbrook Academy of Art, receiving honors and awards from both, in addition to an honorary doctorate from Amherst College where she currently works as a Professor of Art.
Clark, a fiber artist, served as chair of the Craft/Material Studies department at Virginia Commonwealth University from 2006-2017. Her work has explored a variety of materials; from human hair and combs as an exploration of the African experience, to fabric and flags that unpack the Confederacy and it’s harmful legacy. Clark’s work has been shown internationally, and featured in numerous publications like the New York Times, Time Magazine, Italian Vogue, the LA Times, and many more.