Gio Swaby’s Stitched Portraits Reveal the Beauty of the Undone

by Grace Edquist for VOGUE

To create the textile works in her new solo exhibition at Claire Oliver Gallery, in Harlem, Gio Swaby turned inward. After a prolific few years of making portraits mostly of her family and friends, she was ready to reflect on her tumultuous recent past and channel whatever feelings that introspection stirred. 

The resulting seven self-portraits, all made this year, comprise “I Will Blossom Anyway,” on view at Claire Oliver through July 15. “I’m exploring multiple sides to my identity and how all of those things are connected,” says the Bahamian artist, 31, from her home in Toronto, where she’s lived for the past three years. “I think about it as documenting my personal history.” 

June 8, 2023