We had the good fortune of connecting with Shawny / Humlao Evans and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shawny / Humlao, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
This is a very interesting question. In all truth, I’d have to say that COVID-19 really forced my life to find balance. Prior to pandemic, I was on that extreme hustle going from job to job to gig to gig daily. I was used to juggling multiple projects at all times, working 7 days a week in both morning and evenings just to feel like I was being productive enough. Looking back on it all now, I kind of marvel at how I was still even able to get through. and even more importantly, as I reflect on those times of my life, which were so grueling that I can find pride in knowing that my tenacity and work ethic were so strong, the best part is that I’m still able to be humbled and more grateful every moment that I continue to learn to shift focus towards increasing my own quality of life through finding more balance. The impacts of Pandemic, really opened my eyes. I can spend so much more energy on creating and nurturing meaningful relationships as opposed to just being busy all the time. that its ok to just slow down.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
At present, my current focus has been on how I can create artworks that use knowledges from my own heritage as a Pacific Islander. Using the history of colonial influence on Micronesia, I’m currently designing immersive experiential environments that integrate Diasporic Pacific Islander cultural practices, somatic-based movement creation, spoken word, media, and technology. These various mediums serve as catalysts and points of entry for discussions on equity, decolonization, and demilitarization of the Unincorporated Territories within the Marianas, which the United States has supposedly “liberated.” Through community collaboration and thought-provoking artistic expression, my work promotes accessibility, eco-sustainability, and peace.

I want to dive deep into historical and present day ethnographic contexts and bring attention to movements that hold meaning to me and allow the confrontation with my own embodied contradictions to create new entry points of excavation. I want to hold open space for bodies, both human and non-human, to breathe, find balance, freedom of expression, and feel the expanse of multi-planal consciousness.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m more of an outdoorsy person in my free and social time, so some spots I’d definitely take them to venture off with me would be to Sweetwater Creek Park or Arabia Mountain. Because its summer, I would also take them to Chute the Hooch. For food and nightlife, I’d definitely make a point to check out the progress at Chattahoochee Food Works while getting some tea at Unbeliebubble. Their rose milk tea is my absolute favorite, and Tyde & Tate Kitchen is a must. And while over there, can’t miss out on a stroll to Scofflaw Brewery. Painted Pin and/or Painted Duck would probably also happen. And if we wanted a more chill night, uber eats from some of my faves including Tabla (Indian food is delicious) and Satto (Thai) would happen.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Core Dance. I just entered into Core Dance earlier this February as a Resident Artist. The things I’ve been able to do in the past few months have been pretty life-changing. I just returned from Hawaii with Core Dance on a trip in which we were collaborating with the Hawaii Wildlife Fund and Hawaii Environmental Restoration to aid in the efforts to fight against invasive species and pollution that are seriously affecting biodiversity there. It is truly beautiful to be apart of an organization that is out here doing work with a commitment to real sustainability and change.

Image Credits
James Hicks- black and white photo Daylilies Photography – nude back photo

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutAtlanta is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.