Today we’d like to introduce you to Tina Mari Rucker.
Tina was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and grew up in Georgia and South Carolina. She later moved to Illinois and attended Columbia College Chicago where she received her BA in filmmaking. She later received an MFA from the University of Illinois at Chicago and was awarded the Graduate College Diversity Fellowship. During her school years, she produced and directed a documentary, Numu Tekwa, Speak Comanche. It’s based on the Comanche Tribe and Language Preservation committee’s efforts to preserve their language and culture. She continued making short form films that reflects her story, her history and her struggles. Upon graduation, she focused her time raising her two children. During that time, she began her painting career. She loved abstract and began to focus her time creating pieces using oil. From there, she organized pop up shows incorporating another artist. The shows were a success and she decided to start an LLC. She continues to create art exhibitions, either solo or group. She has a gallery to showcase her latest works at the Bridgeport Art Center. She continues to use her experience in films and art to produce poetic and insightful works.
We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
I embrace my artwork, in series, in movements and with layers. With each creation, I want to use personal experience: my gender, my history, and my race to converse. I want to create a dialogue, a backstory, not just the midpoint but the before and after. I enjoy the ambiguity, the appearance of the minimal. I want the textured, the dimensions and the layered. I want to have the freedom to use the materials needed to create a piece that translate a meaningful dialogue through various approaches.
This current series is titled, Land, Body and Soul. The paintings are large and made with encaustic paint. I use heat and special tools to manipulate the wax and that gives it dimension that translates power. Wax as a whole is very durable but fragile at the same time and that communicates that our land, our body and our soul is durable and yet fragile.
I create different series several times a year to share a new story each time. My objective is to have my artwork seen as a whole with many parts and to see how one connects to one another, not stagnant nor stereotyped and to work with the freedom of knowing my thoughts are constantly moving with new ideas and new ways to produce my art and at the same time to be aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
How can artists connect with other artists?
Being an artist can be lonely if you seclude yourself from others. Since living in Chicago, I have had several studio spaces and I have found that having a studio with other studio spaces is a wonderful asset. You can socialize, critique, and bond friendships that will help you to meet other artists and or clients. Also make sure you allot a time to go to art shows and exhibitions weekly. This will add more connections, both professionally and personally.
Do you have any events or exhibitions coming up? Where would one go to see more of your work? How can people support you and your artwork?
They can view my work in person, by appointment, at Bridgeport Art Center, 1200 W. 35th St. in Chicago. The can visit my website at TMRucker.com or on Instagram at TMRucker.artist. Every 3rd Friday of the month, Bridgeport has open studio/ gallery. It would be great support to stop by or make an appointment to see my latest works. To sign up for my newsletter at TMRucker.com or share any posts on Instagram.
- Address: Bridgeport Art Center
1200 W. 35th St.
Chicago, IL 60609
- Website: Tmrucker.com
- Phone: 3126220848
- Email: Tinamari@tmrucker.com
- Instagram: tmrucker.artist
Photo by Ekaterina Shvedova