Avila Now

April 10, 2017

Tina West Still Life Photographs on Exhibit in Thornhill Gallery

Tina West Still Life Photo
Tina West Still Life.

(April 10, 2017) KANSAS CITY, MO – “My still life photographs are sculptural installations, created environments that give new meaning to objects, as their scale is re-addressed through a new place in space and time,” Tina West said. “All my life is still life’s featured in found objects, including objects that in some manner find me.” 

The work of Tina West is now on display in the Thornhill Gallery on the campus of Avila University. The exhibit, entitled You Are Still a Work in Progress runs through April 20.

The beauty of Tina West’s latest show lies in the maturity and wonder of her still lives. With each image, West stages her scene with unique treasures from her vast collection. Allowing them to speak to her, rather than the opposite, each object is chosen because of each object’s sheer attraction.

The sharp subconscious connection West feels to her still life objects comes across strongly. This produces a magical end product that has both transformed and repurposed the photographed objects entirely. Though still lives are considered a classic image, West exemplifies a charming, experimental take that pushes the boundaries of the historical still life.

The invitational image, Constraint Inspires Creativity, embodies the breadth of her work in capturing a warm rich okra-gold “Do Not Disturb” sign against a similar background. The photo feels cryptic and almost treasure-like, giving the viewer a hint of her alluded creativity. The title is just as interactive, playing not only off the sign’s words but also off the image’s overall emotion.

West’s still lives have a true sense of being, with powerful cast shadows and light-play. This creates a connection not only between the objects photographed, but between the viewer and the photograph as well. All Images in this exhibit are created using instant film, Fuji on her most recent images and Polaroid on her earlier works.

The Thornhill Gallery is open Monday – Thursday 10 AM – 3 PM and by appointment.

For more information, contact 816-501-3762.

Avila University, a Catholic University sponsored by the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet, is a values-based community of learning providing liberal arts, professional, undergraduate and graduate education to prepare students for responsible, lifelong contributions to the global community. Our approach to education brings out the best in our students, so they can bring out the best in others. 

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