Working in painting, drawing and sculpture, Torkwase Dyson combines expressive mark-making and geometric abstraction to explore the continuity between ecology, infrastructure and architecture. Dyson deconstructs, distills and interrogates the built environment, exploring how individuals – particularly Black and Brown people – negotiate, negate and transform systems and spatial order. Her work has extended beyond traditional studio practices in projects such as Studio South Zero (SSZ) a solar-powered mobile studio for learning and making art about the environment, or the roving pedagogical site The Wynter-Wells Drawing School for Environmental Liberation (2018-present). In projects such as I Can Drink the Distance (2019) and Liquid a Place (2021), Dyson created sculptural and architectural installations that provide a platform for collaboration with other artists, dancers, and thinkers. Throughout her work and research, Dyson seeks to confront issues of environmental liberation, envisioning a path towards a more equitable future.
Torkwase Dyson (b. Chicago, 1973, works in Beacon, NY) studied sociology, social work, and fine art at Tougaloo College, Mississippi; she received a BFA in painting from Virginia Commonwealth University and Masters in Fine Arts in Painting from Yale School of Art. Her work has been the focus of solo exhibitions at New Orleans Museum of Art, Louisiana; Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine; Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Chicago; Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, Philadelphia; Suzanne Lemberg Usdan Gallery, Bennington College, Vermont; The Hall Foundation, Schloss Derneburg, Germany; and Serpentine Galleries, London. Group exhibitions include The Studio Museum in Harlem, The Whitney Museum of American Art, and The Drawing Center, New York; Corcoran College of Art and Design, and the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.; and the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio, among others. Torkwase Dyson will present a new, commissioned work for the upcoming group exhibition A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration at the Mississippi Museum of Art and Baltimore Museum of Art (2022).