TALWST is a Canadian-Trinidadian artist engaged in mixed media and performance practices. Through his work, he explores the narrative of art history, whilst inserting elements of contrasting cultures in order to engage a larger audience and in hopes of broadening
the addressed themes in art historical discourse.
Over the last several years, TALWST has attracted the attention of colleagues and contemporaries alike as both artist and art educator. A former Vancouver resident, TALWST apprenticed alongside Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun for three years; Yuxweluptun’s friendship and guidance have been invaluable to TALWST’s personal and professional growth. The artist’s first international solo exhibition, “Death of Swag,’ took place in 2012 at Fuse Gallery in New York City, where
TALWST’s work continues to be extremely well received.
While creating and performing is integral to TALWST’s practice, engaging in art education and
awareness found itself at the forefront of his priorities in Fall of 2014, when the artist taught contemporary art as a part of The Roots and Branches Residency through The Art Gallery of
Mississauga. By creating a month-long curriculum for over 400 students in grades 7 and 8, TALWST
was able to explore his own artistic narrative whilst engaging new audiences through an
interdisciplinary program that uses contemporary art as a means to expand curricular topics in art education in Ontario.
2014 also marked the beginning of a very important relationship for TALWST, when the Art Gallery of Ontario selected him as a featured artist for their annual Massive Gala; the AGO has since
appointed TALWST Artistic Director and Co-Curator of the 2015 Massive Gala. In anticipation of the upcoming Jean-Michel Basquiat exhibition opening at the AGO in February 2015, for which TALWST has joined the Programming Advisory Committee, the artist was commissioned to create a
performance piece for the VIP Opening Night Preview at the 15th Annual Toronto International Art
Fair. Playing with themes of Carnival and TALWST’S shared Caribbean heritage with Basquiat, the
exclusive performance was a highlight of the evening.
The upcoming year is a compelling time to tune into TALWST’s burgeoning career, as the artist
prepares for a number of exciting exhibitions and collaborations. Generously funded by the RBC
Foundation, TALWST’s solo exhibition at the Art Gallery of Mississauga in the XIT Room, opens
February 26th, 2015. Also running through February as a part of the TD Bank Then and Now Series,
which celebrates Black history and identity through visual art in the Western world, the artist will be hosting a solo exhibition at the Drake Hotel featuring his ‘Nubian’ Series. Finally, in collaboration with Vice Magazine, TALWST will be creating a body of work to appear in the magazine’s photo issue, which has a worldwide circulation and over 900, 000 readers, and is set to hit the stands in June 2015. Meanwhile, a separate exhibition with Vice is also in the works. 2015 assures us that there is no end in site for TALWST. Stay tuned…
TALWST works out of his studio in Toronto, Ontario.