A'Driane "addyeB" Nieves is a USAF veteran, artist, activist, and speaker with a heart for serving others and social good. She's also a mental health advocate living with bipolar disorder, running an online mental health support group for women of color called Tessera Collective. She is also the co-founder of Addie Addye Studios in Philadelphia, PA, an art space for Philly area women artists of color. She empowers women to transform brokenness in their lives into power and beauty, and amplifies the voices and experiences of those marked as Other in society through her written and visual work. Most recently she was featured alongside Bono as a ONE Campaign activist and volunteer for Glamour Magazine’s “Woman of the Year” issue, where Bono was awarded their first ever “Man of the Year’ award for his work on gender equity and extreme poverty. She believes creating and viewing visual art that addresses themes such as racism, mental health, and recovering from trauma can serve as a catalyst for personal growth and social change. Her work has been featured on BlogHer, Everyday Feminism, Upworthy, Buzzfeed, Mashable, The Fourth Trimester Bodies Project, Sheryl Sandberg's "Option B" platform, and MISC Magazine. Her artwork has been exhibited at Wild Goose Festival, Johnson State College, WORKS San Jose, Rare Device in San Francisco, and most recently at The Other Art Fair Brooklyn. She lives in New Jersey with her robotics-loving husband and three boys.
As a survivor of abuse, painting is an excavation of everything I hid in my mind and body for survival during childhood. It is also an act of reclaiming my voice, as well as my way of establishing agency over my own body and the messages told about it and its worth. I examine trauma and pain and celebrate the resiliency, joy, and transformation that can occur in spite of it. Because my work is rooted in and influenced by both abstract and figurative expression, I’m intrigued by our internal processes as we experience life as an Other, both individually and collectively. By focusing on the impact of trauma-inherited, personal and historical, my work exposes how trauma itself shapes, alters, and redefines identity over the course of our lives. I rely on abstract, figurative forms and composition to communicate what the biological and emotional processes of adaptation, recovery, and transformation look like internally.