When first entering the studio of Tonya Haswell, the viewer is greeted with an explosion of whimsical and vibrant collages, assemblages, and texture filled paintings. Each work of art is a deep investigation; a new venture that many times brings forth an internal awareness or awakening.
Objects such as vintage keys, clothing patterns, yarn, belt buckles, buttons and coffee grounds are used in Tonya's work. These objects are a spring board into dialogue, creating stories that are symbolic of moments past, such as childhood memories of the artist's Grandmother. Other objects are placed together in a way that form new meaning, bringing even further value into the discarded.
Each item that has been gathered, collected, and placed strategically onto the coffee stained or ripped surface, is then altered with paint or wax, as if to cover something that is no more, forgotten, or disappearing. These objects are then wiped away, partially - uncovering specific areas, giving the viewer just a clue of what the objects are communicating.
Tonya's work entices and engages the viewer, by allowing them to incorporate their own stories or conclusions. Visit Tonya's studio at the Tannery Row Artist Colony, # 86.