Oscar N Elliot

ELLIOT - Oscar
(Sara-Elliot Oscar Nym) passed away
on June 27, 2022 in Buffalo, NY. Oscar
was born in Burlington, VT on May, 9
1987 to Debra (Thomas) Burhans and
the late William C. Burhans. Oscar
is survived by their mother, Debra
and sister, Molly Burhans of Buffalo,
NY; aunts, and uncles, Mary Thomas
(Fred Witkin), Peter Burhans (Crystal),
Buzz Burhans (Chris Rossiter), David
Burhans (Jeanette), and Barbara
Burhans, and Burhans cousins Dawn,
Daniel, David, Christopher, Ben,
Kelsey, Heather, and Grace. Oscar
attended Mount St. Joseph Academy,
City Honors School, and graduated in
2005 from The Park School of Buffalo.
They received a BA in Comparative
Literature from Hobart and Williams
Smith Colleges. Oscar trained at the
Neglia Conservatory of Ballet from
1995-2005 and attended summer
programs at the Central Pennsylvania
Youth Ballet. Oscar had a lifelong
passion for dance and music. Oscar
attended cosmetology school at The
Salon Professional Academy and
graduated from the Buffalo School of
Cosmetology and Barbering in 2019.
Oscar saw hair styling as a science
and an art. They were exceptionally
talented with artistic and novel uses
of hair color. They believed hair could
empower and engender confidence
and joy in people from all walks of
life. Oscar generously provided hair
services to many friends for little or
no money, especially to LGBTQ+ and
neuro-divergent individuals who might
not have felt comfortable or welcome in
a salon or might have lacked the means
to access one. Oscar’s talent for visual
art extended beyond the salon chair.
They created numerous multi-media
works, particularly collages, whose
designs were inspired by the human
condition and psyche, including their
own emotional states. Some of their
art addressed issues of social and
economic justice. They were inspired
by the beauty around them, from the
landscapes they spent many hours
walking through to their favorite movies
and shows, with a special fondness for
Totoro. Oscar was a voracious reader,
they particularly enjoyed the writing of
Jorge Luis Borges and Italo Calvino.
Oscar suffered from severe mental
illness. Despite their struggles, they
were known by those around them as
a generous friend, a creative spirit, and
a loving presence. Oscar will be greatly
missed by all who knew and loved
them. In lieu of flowers, please consider
donating to an inclusive and accessible
local arts organization or to the National
Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)