In Digest, a series of paper plates decorated like Delftware with images from newspaper reports, Tisna offers a witty and poignant critique of the daily diet of violent and banal imagery served up in the Western media. Through playful subversion Digest prompts us to ask, what are we being fed and, as we take it in, what do we become?
Delft Blue vessels belong to the Digest-series, where Tisna maries the decorative with politics. Screenprints of Dutch and Greek vases decorated like Delftware with images from newspaper reports, Tisna offers a witty and poignant critique of the daily diet of violent and banal imagery served up in the Western media. Through playful subversion Digest prompts us to ask, what are we being fed and, as we take it in, what do we become?
In Delft Blue, the classic Dutch tile format is given a surreal twist. A smiling girl paddles outside her flooded home. Children dangle from London landmarks, oblivious to danger. The narrative possibilities multiply in a tiled expanse where childhood dreams are played out beneath an overshadowing air of threat.
Tisna is creating an ongoing series of patchworks, sewing together newspaper reports of the London riots with fabrics from clothes she wore as a child. Using this ancient craft technique, traditionally handed from mother to daughter, Tisna opens up a dialogue about inheritance and creativity in response to media representations of violence.
In her large embroidered portraits of young male and female subjects, Tisna combines patterning and decorating patch works, sewing together newspaper reports of refugees and police brutality with fabrics from clothes she wore as a child. Inspired by Japanese war kimonos Tisna applies an ancient craft technique, traditionally handed from mother to daughter, to initiate a dialogue about inheritance and creativity in response to media representations of violence. Using snap shots of family life as her source material, alongside imagery from historic films/- documentation, her subjects, the quietly strong but vulnerable young sitters are a metaphor for - and explore the theme of innocence. They seem to be disengaged from judgement and criticism, which enables an examination of the principles of equanimity, humility and acceptance that is installed in all of us.
The conventional handicraft techniques Tisna employs-ranging from printmaking, to drawing, needlework, embroidery and papercuts- as a vehicle for her ideas, are labour intensive and providing her with a process that allows for time to reflect on the essence of what she’s expressing. Her reinvention of traditionally female handicrafts in combination with words and simplified images offer the spectator a compelling route to explore the idea of nostalgia.
'Black Wall Street' is an installation based on current media reports of police brutality in the US and the 1921 Tulsa Race Riots of Whites against Blacks, one of the most devastating massacres in the history of US race relations.
The screenprint series City (E)scapes celebrates the physical joy of innocent abandonment to play. Bright pools and washes of colour conjure the fluidity of identity in a liquid world where fantasy engulfs our sense of self.
‘Aan-Uit’ (On-Off) is a delicate monograph of hand printed and -bound dry points about the journey of a relationship, its break-up and eventually the awakening of a new sense of self, using compounds and idioms.
‘Aan-Uit’ is a visual and textual journey about the despair of loss and separation that makes you go through the depth of yourself and pushing you to a whole new level. When you loose somebody you reconnect with life and can somehow see ‘the bigger picture’. By using idioms and combining separate words, that - when combined together form a whole new meaning, the artist creates an interesting dialogue between text&image: the compounds and the powerful, simplified images.
In her Dutch native language ‘Aan-Uit’ (On-Off) refers to the beginning & end of a relationship but also the metaphor of a light switch: when something is being switched off, automatically something else will switch on (a thought, an idea). ‘Aan-uit (On-Off) is often used in Dutch compounds, (like oncoming or offensive) for example ‘aanpassen’ means ‘to adapt’ or ‘uitstekend’ means ‘excellent’ but ‘stekend’ by itself means ‘stinging’, referring to the hurt caused by loss/loneliness. The previous break-up of a relationship and the experience of losing an older sister suffuses Tisna’s work with warmth and a sense of the precariousness and fragility of what we treasure. But most of all it highlights the hidden treasure: “When the heart weeps because it has lost, the spirit laughs because it has found.” This 1 off artist book is hardcover, bound in black Irish book cloth with silkscreened and blind embossed titling. The collection of dry points is printed on Japanese paper which enhances the delicacy of the subject matter.