Tokie Rome-Taylor focuses on the representation of black bodies, striving to psychologically shift the internal narrative of the viewer of her artwork towards acceptance, expanded perception and expectation. She is interested in exploring the concept of vessels and objects/artifacts as a means of layered cultural symbolism while acting as conduits of memory. Her portraits evoke a mystical sense of a different time and place. Themes of adornment, memory, spirituality and time are prevalent in her work. Her subjects are inserted into the past of an alternate reality, creating the narrative of them being their ancestors in the present for their heirs to see in the future. These ancestors embody power over destiny, representation, and spirit, influencing the viewer as their descendants.
Atlanta, GA based artist Tokie Rome-Taylor's photography career began early, where at the age of 18, she was given the honor of creating portraits of Coretta Scott King for the book, The Many Faces of Sweet Auburn. Rome-Taylors' work explores representation through themes of adornment, memory, spirituality and time. She draws inspiration and influence from an eclectic range of time periods, artists, and cultures. Key influencers are Old Renaissance Master painters, along with Harlem Renaissance photographer James Van Der Zee and afro-futurism/afro-surrealism . She is additionally influenced by a love of culture, and vintage artifacts/clothing.
Rome-Taylor's work has been published in Behind the Shutter Magazine as well as Art-Diction Magazine. She has been featured on several podcasts discussing her practice including StudioNoize and National Black Arts Festival:ReImagined. She is a Funds for Teachers Fellowship recipient, studying photography in Santa Fe, New Mexico and in San Francisco, California. She is an Honorable Mention recipient for the International Photography Awards (2019)- sponsored by the Lucie Foundation. She is a 2019 recipient of the 2019 Virginia Twinam Smith Purchase Award.
Rome-Taylor’s portraits have been featured in several museums, galleries and exhibitions including the Masur Museum (LA), ArtFields (SC), Johns Creek Art Center, (GA) The High Rise Exhibition (GA), Emerging Photographers Exhibition curated by Mechi Mecho (GA), Zuckerman Museum of Art (GA), Auburn Research Library (GA), Callanwolde Fine Arts Center (GA) Hartsfield Jackson International Airport (GA), the ArtXchange (GA) and Alan Avery Selects: APG Gallery Show (GA). Taylor's work is held in several private collections as well as by the Fulton County Arts Council and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Georgia. She has five bright, beautiful children, a wonderful husband, a love of science fiction and learning new things.