"I was always trying to search for whoever I was, and it took a really long time."
LA-based artist and photographer Tasya van Ree seeks to galvanise the power of female creativity through her art. Seeking to diversify popular representations of womanhood, the artist muses on the notion of strength and the profound power of introspection.
On any given day, you will find Tasya Van Ree sequestered in her studio weaving, cutting and documenting the surreal visions that appear in her mind’s eye. The female artist explains that she is often alone and enjoys the solitude- an inward looking temperament is essential for the creative process. Over the years, many prominent women have been captured by Van Ree’s lens including conservationist Jane Goodall, model Colleen Heidemann, and designer Momo Suzuki. Between photoshoots, the creator reflects on her guiding life philosophy and the true value of resilience.
I really try to exist in my own energetic field.Tasya Van Ree
Tasya van Ree: At times by society’s standards, yes. Only because I really try to exist in my own energetic field, my own centre, my own bubble of internal reflection and conscious evolution. Sometimes when I step out of that bubble, who I am and what I stand for can be misconstrued as rebellious. It goes against certain versions of a normal way of everyday thinking. But times are changing and so is society’s understanding of acceptance and awareness. Soon the context of rebellion won’t exist because we will all be living in a state of universal harmony and love (wishful thinking). Our focus is shifting to a more emotionally evolved space. No-one wants to live in an antiquated system. We want to live in the future.
TVR: My upbringing allowed me to embrace the sense of freedom. The freedom to exist in a way that is consistent with the complex system of the universe. Open, wide, vast, powerful and graceful in its violent nature. Finding an influential sequence in its polarity. Freedom is the landscape of our wellbeing, our happiness, our own language. It has a sort of romanticism that can be characterised as infinite and ceremonial. It’s everything.
TVR: Strength is a culmination of a lot of factors; lineage, upbringing, environment and life experience. Strength looks like a woman. The ageing process of being a woman is so beautiful. That alone has brought me a higher understanding of what strength is. All of the harmonies and treasures and insights that come along with it are so very enlightening- revelations of hope, desire, existence, happiness, sadness, love. These allow people to understand the circumstance or the life process we are living and express self-awareness, a connection to it and to the outside world.
TVR: To find the quietude within and begin to really listen to the echoes that surround it. It’s all there.
TVR: I go inwards. I begin to separate myself from my surroundings and dive deep into my own solitude. I sit there for awhile and focus in on who I am outside of everything that surrounds me. It brings me back to the beginning. It’s important to be centred, as an artist, as an individual, and as a human being.
TVR: Inner strength and self-love are the best teachers, but every personal and impersonal relationship that I have had in my life has taught me something. It has been a group effort along the way. Everything is a teacher. Every bit of information that we interact with at all levels teaches us something. The experience of understanding is an infinite prism.
Tasya van Ree is a multidisciplinary artist working in Los Angeles, California. Her artwork is infused with otherworldly elements of eros, alchemy, and offers insight into the infinite mystery of the natural world. She has also founded the online communities ‘Women with Superpowers’ and ‘Intergalactic Girl’s Club’, designed to celebrate female creatives.
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