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Torkwase Dyson, Liquid a Place, Desert X, Palm Desert © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Lance Gerber, courtesy Desert X

Torkwase Dyson

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b. 1973, Chicago, Illinois

Torkwase Dyson describes herself as a painter working across multiple mediums to explore the continuity between ecology, infrastructure, and architecture.

Examining human geography and the history of Black spatial liberation strategies, Dyson’s abstract works grapple with the ways in which space is perceived, imagined and negotiated particularly by black and brown bodies. Dyson has distilled a vocabulary of poetic forms to address the spaciousness of freedom and question what type of climates are born out of world building.

In addition to participating in group exhibitions at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington, D.C.; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; and California African American Museum, Los Angeles, Dyson has had solo exhibitions and installations at Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine; Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Chicago; Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, Philadelphia; and Suzanne Lemberg Usdan Gallery, Bennington College, Vermont.


Torkwase Dyson, I Belong to the Distance, 2019. Installation view, Sharjah Biennial 14: Leaving the Echo Chamber, Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation © Torkwase Dyson


Installation view, The 13th Shanghai Biennale: Bodies of Water, Apr 16 – Jul 25, 2021, Power Station of Art, Shanghai © Torkwase Dyson


Torkwase Dyson, I Can Drink the Distance: Plantationocene in 2 Acts, featuring Deja Smith, Arthur Jafa, and Gaika, Performed at Pace Gallery on November 22, 2019

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Torkwase Dyson, Liveness (Multi-Scalar Motion #1), 2022. Installation view, Torkwase Dyson: A Liquid Belonging, Pace Gallery, 540 West 25th Street, Nov 11 – Dec 17, 2022 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Melissa Goodwin

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Torkwase Dyson, Beloved Stillness (Hypershape), 2022. Installation view, Torkwase Dyson: A Liquid Belonging, Pace Gallery, 540 West 25th Street, Nov 11 – Dec 17, 2022 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Melissa Goodwin


Installation view, Stories of Resistance, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, Mar 12 – Aug 15, 2021 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Dusty Kessler


Torkwase Dyson, Dark Black (Bird and Lava), 2021. Installation view, Climate Changing: On Artists, Institutions, and the Social Environment, Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Jan 30 – May 9, 2021 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Luke Stettner, courtesy Wexner Center for the Arts


Installation view, Torkwase Dyson: I Can Drink the Distance, Mar 26 – Apr 25, 2019, The Cooper Union, New York © Torkwase Dyson, courtesy The Cooper Union


Installation View, Torkwase Dyson, Hall Art Foundation | Schloss Derneburg Museum, Derneburg, Germany, Sep 3, 2021 – May 15, 2022 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Volker Crone, courtesy Hall Art Foundation


Torkwase Dyson, Way Over There Inside Me (A Festival of Inches). Installation view, A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration, Baltimore Museum of Art, Oct 30, 2022 – Jan 29, 2023 © Torkwase Dyson. Photo by Mitro Hood, courtesy Baltimore Museum of Art