Saturday, May 14, 2016


Before I met Shya Beth at the EQUUS Film Festival in New York City, November, I had seen FLEUR, a brilliantly colored and constructed horse sculpture. FLEUR is incredible.

Later I had the opportunity to meet and talk with her. She is a remarkable young woman, at the time Shya was fifteen years old and not only well spoken, but a woman who was passionate about not only her art but also horses and other people’s art too.

It is one moment in time that I will never forget, for her conversation was interesting, her presence of self, far beyond what most achieve in their lifetimes and her art is remarkable and full of passion.

I am so pleased to have the opportunity to interview her on my blog.

Please help me welcome the talented Shya Beth.

Shya when we met at the Equus Film Festival in November of 2015, I was amazed at the workmanship and beauty of your sculpture Fleur and how wonderfully you present yourself, your creativity and intelligence.

Besides Fleur, I understand that you have many more sculptures and some of them are/were picked to be exhibited at different places.

Would you tell us about that? And where they are/have been on exhibition?

First of all, thank you for your kind compliments on my art, Marta! Yes, I have several other sculptures that are complete and much more in progress. “Fleur!!” was my first nearly life-size equine sculpture, followed by my “New Year’s Horse” made out of cedar/pine branches to celebrate the New Year. 

I have also made my Blue Jean Jumper, which is covered in blue jeans that I have collected at thrift shops and jeans that friends have “donated” to my project.  For the past few years, I have been making carousel horses out of the old ride on hobby horses as well.

For your question on exhibits, My carousels have been exhibited for several years (2013-2015) at one of the largest horse shows in NJ, The Garden State Horse Show. Fleur!! Was then exhibited at Centenary College’s Equine Center (Hackettstown, NJ, October 2014-October 2015) along with New Years Horse.

Christmas Horse & Full Carousel

Joey (from War Horse

Blue Denzel

Little Jumper

Knight Horse
Patriotic Horse

Side Saddle Jumper

My Blue Jean Jumper and Fleur!! were on the Awards Stage at the EQUUS Film Festival and this past January 2016 Fleur!! was at the Peters Valley Art Gallery & School of Craft in Layton, NJ.

I read that you are also a filmmaker, would you tell us what goes into filmmaking? And what your films are about?
Lots of hard work, dedication, and perseverance, even when things don’t work out or get too hard instantly came to mind.
My films are about my Blue Jean Horse Project. My Project consists of about 13 life-size equine sculptures representing different disciplines/breeds of horses, including show jumping, polo, racing, dressage, etc. Each horse will go on its own unique journey to different horse shows/events, to be signed by prominent riders/trainers/, etc. In their respective fields. Once each horse is covered in signatures, I will have an exhibit of them, then auction them off to benefit horse charities. So, my documentaries will include interviews with the people who sign them, and with some of the organizations that will be benefiting from the Project as well.

And where you get your ideas from?
The stillness of the forest, epic music ;)

I am astounded at the creativity and amount of projects you already have going. Are they all based around the equine world?

Yes. As I said about my Blue Jean Horse Project, many of my sculptures represent horse breeds/disciplines. Several other equine sculptures that are in progress represent horses in myths as well.

Would you tell us how you came up with the idea for your Equine Art Hour?
In January of 2015, I started going on “hours”, which are essentially groups of people that meet on Twitter to tweet about all things horses (there are several other hours that are for other topics as well). After a while, I started to notice there was a gap for horse art, and I decided to bridge that gap by creating the first-ever #equinearthour on Twitter. Now, I use it as an interviewing platform, where I interview equine artists and where people from around the world can ask the artist’s questions about their art.
You also have a blog called the Flying Shetlands that showcases equine art and artists. What motivated you to do this?
For years I would bookmark articles about equine art and save books/articles about horse art and the idea just came from that!
Where do you find your contributors?
Everywhere! Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, magazines/books and other artists.

What other projects are you currently working on?

My Blue Jean Horse Project, many other equine sculptures of various forms. I have a few other long term, 'The Flying Shetlands' projects in the works as well.

Thanks for interviewing me, Marta!

Thank you, Shya, it was such a pleasure talking with you again, I hope we have a chance to connect again. Perhaps at the EQUUS Film Festival, this year?
You probably all saying “whew” to yourself and are as astounded as I was at the creativity, talent and drive of this young woman. I believe we will be seeing much more of her as the years go by. What do you think?

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