Sandy Springs artist pays tribute to her mom and other breast cancer survivors

Amy Rees’s newest line of plates, Sisters in Pink, is a nod to women supporting other women.
Published: Oct. 23, 2023 at 7:49 AM EDT
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - A local artist is paying tribute to her mother, a breast cancer survivor, all while inspiring other women to tell their survivor stories.

Sandy Springs artist/entrepreneur Amy Rees has been creating for much of her adult life. She says she started making plates with unique faces on them years ago to manage the stresses in her life.

“I started creating woman after woman after woman, all these plates. I started naming them and giving them fun backstories. I think it was a way for me to express myself,” said Rees.

From that experience, her Personality Plates were born. Rees’s art would eventually lead to a business venture she now calls AmyWynne Designs.

Her newest line of plates, Sisters in Pink, is a nod to women supporting other women when times are tough. Rees was inspired by her mother’s story of survival. Bobbi Strauss was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1959. At the age of 18, she’s believed to be the youngest person to ever have a mastectomy. Back then, cancer wasn’t openly talked about.

“I think of this 18-year-old that was my mom that had to go through this alone,” said Rees. “I’m hoping that by sharing her story, other women will reach out to me or use social media and join in and share their story as well.”

Rees calls her Sisters in Pink collection a symbol of hope for a future where early detection, comprehensive treatments, and open conversations about breast cancer become the norm, not the exception.

“Back then you didn’t say breast, much less cancer,” said Bobbi Strauss, Rees’s mother. “For her to use my experience to hopefully help others, I think that’s fantastic,” said Bobbi Strauss, Rees’s mother.

Rees’s Sister in Pink collection is available for purchase. Ten percent of the proceeds this month will go to the organization It’s the Journey. The nonprofit funds grants for other organizations that help with breast cancer research and education as well as financial assistance for those going through a cancer diagnosis.