Grand Chelem is about the British racer Lewis Hamilton. Sheena Rose first heard about the racer from her brother who often talked about Hamilton and how much he had accomplished as a Black racer: Hamilton is the first, and as of 2021 the only, Black racer in Formula One. While Hamilton is highlighted in the work, the audience is depicted in a range of skin tones. “I wanted to show that everyone is included,” said Rose about the audience.
In creating the brightly patterned clothing and car, Rose was inspired by the idea of futurism and in particular the aesthetics of the film Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. She was also influenced by Modern artists and Pan-Africanism, which she represented by the colors red, black and green.
"Rose’s new series of sports-themed paintings explode with emotion and celebration of their Black subjects while exploring themes of victory, play, and hope. The poised figures engage boldly in their practices, surrounded by bright, joyful color. Created in her studio in Barbados this year, the paintings are a result of the artist’s shift in focus following a heavy year of global and personal illness."
Zoe Lukov, 'Skin in The Game' exhibition, Palm heights, Miami, Nov 30 - Dec 10, 2021