Tamia Spinks
Painting & Drawing

Tamia Spinks (American, b. 1997) Tamia Spinks is an oil painter from Milan, TN, currently living in Chattanooga, TN. In 2018, Spinks transferred to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, to pursue her bachelor's degree in Painting and Drawing. Spinks creates large scale paintings that explores her identity and her perception of Black life, while depicting normal scenarios within her work. In 2019 she was included in her first group exhibition alongside her peers at the Apothecary, a student led UTC campus gallery. This was the jumpstart of being included in many more. In 2020, she was featured in another campus exhibit A Portrait of a.... The following year she was rewarded Honorable Mention by guest juror Ellex Swavoni, in her 2021 Exhibit Immortal Messages. As she finishes up her last semester at UTC, she will be included in the 2022 BFA Senior Thesis Exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art at UTC. Spinks plans to take some time off from school developing her portfolio before beginning her journey to
receiving her masters.

Images from “Prevail,” 2022

Artist Statement:

As a painter, I am reversing the narrative when it comes to the media’s classic stereotypical portrayal of Black life, by changing the representation of the Black figure. I depict them in more normal scenarios in order to change people's perceptions of them. However, my work does not tell the story of all Black people, but instead focuses more about my own perception of what it is like to be Black. I explore this idea by reflecting on my life from a child until my early twenties. Thinking about the events that took place and how they have shaped me into the woman I am today. Whether I use photos of myself, family or friends, I am using  my paintings as a journal to tell my story. You will learn about the exciting and
unpleasant moments that occurred in my life. I am allowing my viewers into my home space so that they can connect with me on a personal level. I am provoking a  nostalgic feeling for my viewers and giving them a sense of belonging that the media failed to provide.