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Tiny Arch Gallery 003: Tomisin Oluwole

Our third artist in our Tiny Arch Gallery is Tomisin Oluwole. Her exhibit, "Faces", is centered on the self and ideas that indirectly evoke feelings of self. It is a vibrant show that plays on different perspectives on the faces she sees. Oluwole hopes to inspire curiosity and a warm sense of familiarity with her work. I personally enjoy how lively every piece is yet each face still evokes different emotions.
 
Hi Tomisin. Please introduce yourself. 
My name is Tomisin Oluwole, I’m 22 years old and I was born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria. I came to the U.S. for school in 2015 and studied Fashion Merchandising at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB). I graduated in the summer of 2019, and published my first book, an anthology of poems, in the summer of 2020. The book is titled Half Past in the A.M.: a conversation amongst selves. As a creative, my primary mediums are: poetry, painting, photography, and fashion styling. As an artist, or perhaps simply as a person, I have many interests and consequently, these different and often unrelated concentrations have and continue to influence my art. Some of these interests include: roller skating, music, film, anime, literature, and fashion. Currently, I am balancing being an artist with being a graduate student at CSULB, where I major in Linguistics.
What was it like for you to move to a whole new country away from all the people you know? How did your family feel about the move? And What made you decide on Long Beach? 

Moving to another country wasn't that daunting because I was already familiar enough with traveling to places or going on school trips overseas on my own, so in that regard, i was fine. However, the more I socialized with people here, the more I began to understand and distinguish the cultural differences that are quite apparent to a foreign person as one might imagine. I do remember feeling somewhat underwhelmed when I first arrived here because it seemed less glamorous than I had imagined, which is largely due to how America and California in particular, is often depicted on tv and in media. 

Per my family, going to university abroad was normalized for my siblings and I as long as the opportunity presented itself.  The same goes for my friends, majority of which also schooled in foreign countries like the U.K. So it was really a collective decision for me to come here for school. And I chose Long Beach in particular because I wanted somewhere that had a nice, warm weather similar to Nigeria, and also offered my major at the time. So Long Beach felt like a natural fit and still does, I'm happy here. 

Congrats on that first book and by 22 years old! That’s amazing. What do you hope to pursue with your linguistic degree? 
I don't know precisely what I want to pursue but I do know the directions I would like to explore. I would love to go in the direction of media and publications which could be anything from the literary world to the fashion industry, or perhaps the education sector. I imagine myself being some sort of consultant, or creative director, or part time professor haha, so we'll see. 
Could you tell us more about FACES and the inspiration behind it?
Honestly, the inspiration for FACES came after I had curated the paintings I wanted to showcase. It was more subconscious than it was intentional, I just noticed that most of my paintings if not all, had the common thread of a face in some capacity. And naturally, i gravitate towards abstract depictions of people without even really trying to, or there's some sort of allusion to a person. They're the most fascinating subjects to me and that just flows into the direction my art tends to take. I specifically chose the name FACES because I felt like each of the paintings felt strikingly like one, they each had their own identity.
You've done so much by such a young age! What other goals do you have for yourself? 

My goal is to keep creating. I want to be able to express myself through all my creative mediums and have my art travel far and wide. Inspire all kinds of people, that's the overarching goal. 

And lastly, any favorite places to visit or things to do in Long Beach? 

Hmm, I generally like exploring streets that have a retro/vintage feel to them; Long Beach is charmed like that. And I especially love to thrift or just observe and write in coffee shops, Viento Y Agua, pre-pandemic used to be my spot. I also have pockets of areas where i go to decompress, skate, just be. I would name them but i fear they'd loose their sacredness haha. Lastly, I really just love hanging out with my boyfriend and our dog. Doesn't matter where. 

"Faces" is now showcasing at our store's gallery until the end of May. 

 

Any inquiries related to purchasing art can be sent to: info@maridajewelry.com

If you are interested in featuring your work, please email us at marida@maridajewelry.com.

 

 


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