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Kerryann Torres

Kerryann Torres is a self-taught Oil Painter, whose respect for animals and nature is the platform for all her artist explorations. Having a connection to the later, she believe increases our humanity. She has found inspiration in places that she has lived, including, Hawaii, Georgia, Arizona, England, South Africa, Puerto Rico and now California. Her goal is to create art that addresses climate change, but within a context of our everyday life.

Environmental Artist: Kerryann Torres

Based in Sonoma, California




Culturally Arts Collective features:

"On The Rise", January 12th - March 31st, 2022,

Milostka Center for Exhibitions 

How are your works born and what is the most important aspect that links them? If there are some, what other artworks/artists have inspired you?

I moved from Georgia to California, and was instantly hit with the reality of a drought and of wildfires. It completely changed the what I painted. Prior to our move, I was painting wildlife portraits, but faced with impacts of climate change in California, I had to start painting it. I am very inspired by Josie Morway, Scott Listfield and Shawn Huckins. All three of them, tackle social issues or climate change in a way that captivates the viewer.

How do your works address environmental issues? What message are you hoping to convey through them? Where does your need to treat the theme of climate change as the subject of your works come from?

Each painting of a painting I view as an ecosystem. This allows me to explore what is in the ecosystems, what is no longer in the picture, and what is reaching for something new. I could never paint a turtle entangled in a fishing net, it would be too upsetting, but I could however, paint a painting of the ocean entangled in a fishing net. It allows me to tackle difficult topics without causing myself and the viewer to be turned off.

Leaking by Anne-Katrin Spiess

Oil on Canvas. 36 x 1.5 cm, 2022

The problem of climate change is having an impact on the lives of individuals: where does your need to treat the theme of climate change as the subject of your works come from?

I think Covid, changed us all. I personally, could no longer paint squirrels, when I was experiencing the affects of climate change. Covid and the social reckoning of our society, taught me that I can no longer stand by and and not say something.

In your paintings, what are the aspects related to your personal experiences (for example: personal testimonies related to local climate change)?

I have lived on islands, which are microcosms of the effects of climate change; living in Hawaii motivates to do better by the environment. To take care of the land. When I use to walk our dogs on the beach, it would be littered with plastics from the Mainland and on the other side of the island, plastics from Japan. I have always been passionate about nature, but moving to California I was motivated to a new level. After spending a summer with a “Fire Bag” (everything you need incase of an emergency) by our front door, I had to paint it. My first paintings were of wildfires (California) and the huge issue of erosion for islands (Hawaii). I felt like the rest of the country was not paying enough attention and I wanted to scream from the mountain tops “lets do something”, for me, that was painting climate change.

How has your experience living on islands impacted your perception about climate change?

As I mentioned earlier, islands are microcosms of climate change. You can stand on a beach in Maui and look up at Haleakala and see snow there, when there wasn’t any before. You see the damage done to the coral reefs and wildlife, turtles with tumors, fish caught in plastic. It is not something distant or far-off.

How has your work inspired conversation and action towards climate justice?

It starts a conversation and that is what I am looking for. I see this first hand when I am at art fairs. People come back to discuss my work in more detail. I love that. I hope it inspires someone to do something differently, no matter how small.

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