Shawn Shafner is an artist, educator and activist. Creator of The People’s Own Organic Power Project (www.thePOOPproject.org), he has catalyzed conversation about sustainable sanitation from NYC’s largest wastewater treatment plant to the United Nations. Shawn’s solo show An Inconvenient Poop was a Time Out NY Critic’s Pick and won him the 2015 NY International Fringe Festival Award for Overall Excellence in Solo Performance. Other major POOP works include the feature documentary Flush, family musical Innie / Outie, and monthly episodes of SHHH: The Poopcast (aka Shit and Shame with Shawn). His new show, Assume the Throne, is currently touring living rooms across the USA.
Shawn was a 2005 Spielberg Fellow, 2014-15 LABA Fellow, 2014-15 iLAND/LMCC resident (featured in their book, A Field Guide to iLANDing), 2017 Global Social Impact House fellow through UPenn’s Center for Social Impact Strategy, a 2017 Performing Arts Legacy Fellow, 2018 National Fellow through the Environmental Leaders Program, and is a member of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Foundation’s ROI Community.
Outside of The POOP Project, Shawn pursues work that invites human interaction and connection. Community-based projects include The Clap (with Laura Silver), art walks for Jane’s Walks NYC and Elastic City (featured in their forthcoming book), and Latch/Attach commissioned by the World Policy Institute and Fourth Arts Block and exhibited at Cooper Union. An accomplished theatre artist, Shawn’s performances have graced New York Stages from Madison Square Garden to Joe’s Pub, and venues around the world including the Institute for Contemporary Art in London, and Harpa Concert Hall in Iceland. He has sung with the New York Philharmonic at Lincoln Center alongside Marisa Michelson’s Constellation Chor (of whom he is a founding member), and spent the summer of 2017 in residence at the Art Monastery Project, directing a new play about white supremacy. Shawn teaches movement through the lineage of acclaimed choreographer Tamar Rogoff, tells original stories for young children and their families, develops arts-integrated curriculum, and is devoted to manifesting a world of creativity, mindfulness and joy.