Visual Artist (She/Her)

Meet Banesa Planco-Pena

Banesa Blanco-Pena is a 20-year-old Japanese/Dominican- Canadian artist based in East Side Toronto, Bleecker Street. As an artist, Banesa enjoys experimenting with different mediums and styles; however, she specializes in digital art, painting, and drawing. Banesa’s art explores themes of surrealism, semi-realism, and portrait pieces. She takes inspiration from 70’s psychedelic and cartoon-esque styling.

She has been part of programs such as Project Humanity, where she successfully sold her art pieces at their annual charity auction supporting homeless youth. The piece described the landscape of her neighbourhood. However, it showcases the beauty instead of showing the issues and hardships associated with the area. Banesa plans to study further and build on her knowledge of art with aspirations to attend OCAD University.

"Heavy LoadED Gun"

Acrylic on Canvas by Banesa Blanco Pena— Artist Statement [EXCERPT] CONTENT WARNING

My art is a form of escapism consisting of digital art, painting, and drawing. I like incorporating surrealism and cartoon-esque styling into my pieces to give the viewer the same feeling of escapism. However, with this piece, I decided to step into my own reality instead of creating an escape. 


My art piece is titled Heavy LoadED Gun. It illustrates the experience of being a child with a parent suffering from mental illness and suicidal experiences. My work challenges people's perspectives on parental trauma and brings awareness to the complicated emotions of seeing your caregiver suffering. Growing up with a parental figure who suffers from mental illness, you feel it's your responsibility to carry the weight of their mental stability. At the young age of 9, I had to grasp the unfortunate reality that my father may die by his own hands, but it felt like his blood would be on my hands instead.

Acrylic on Canvas by Banesa Blanco Pena

Heavy LoadED Gun

link to view the full piece