My work focuses on identity, as shaped by genetics, place and language. Of these influences, I am primarily concerned mostly with language, as it embodies culture. The manifestation of language in its written form intrigues me, no matter what the culture. Many spoken languages are being eradicated as their last speakers die off. Some had no written form, so are now lost.
The relentless advance of technology has jeopardized written language. In the name of “keyboard proficiency,” homogenized computer symbols are replacing cursive writing. Loss of written language is a loss of the mark making unique to each person, revered since the time of the cave paintings. Yet technology offers artists new materials and forms for creating art. I am currently exploring Tyvek as a substrate for my scroll work. My marks are made with alcohol based inks. I also paint with acrylic and create mixed media works.
Harriette Tsosie is a full time, award-winning artist, working and living in Albuquerque NM. Her work focuses on identity issues such as genetics, place and language. She exhibits both locally and internationally. Her work is included in many catalogs and private collections as well as the Encaustic Art Institute’s permanent collection. She is a featured in the recently published Encaustic Art in the 21st Century (Schiffer Publishing, Atglen, PA).
Tsosie graduated from a small midwestern liberal arts college in Michigan and went on to study painting with renowned New York painter Jules Kirschenbaum. She completed master classes in encaustic with noted artists Paula Roland, Ellen Koment and Gina Adams. Tsosie is represented by Weyrich Gallery and by Sara’s Southwest (Albuquerque) and by The Encaustic Art Institute (Santa Fe).