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The Local Take talks One Day Soon Come Exhibition with photographer Tokie Rome-Taylor

This week on The Local Take, I reached out to fine art photographer Tokie Rome-Taylor about her exhibition One Day Soon Come at the Wren’s Nest until December 31st. Her photographs mix elements such as pearls, gold, silk, and cotton to create portraits of children that are futuristic while being historical.

I ask Rome-Taylor to tell us how she came to be a fine art photographer and what that means. She shares that she teaches visual arts and photography in her day job and has a long history of developing visuals. Photography is her favorite medium, and “fine art” takes images beyond capturing real life. She further explains that she wanted the work to speak for her.

Rome-Taylor shares that between her children at school and her children, she was “drowning in children,” which is why they are the focus of her portraits. She speaks about the sense of belonging beginning in childhood. She also talks about the feeling of being the “other.” For Rome-Taylor, even in Atlanta, she didn’t find herself in fine art spaces. She was often asked, “why do you only do Black people?” Others are not asked questions like these.

I ask Rome-Taylor about the richness of fabrics, pearls, and cotton in her portraiture. She speaks about symbolism in art and mentions the Rennaissance painters who occasionally included the figure of a servant, inevitably Black or Brown, with the prominent figure. She speaks about cotton buds symbolizing the wealth of the south being built on enslaved labor. By mixing pearls with cowrie shells, she pays tribute to the love of adornment that still lives in our culture.

Rome-Taylor explains how a family phrase, One Day Soon Come, became the exhibition title. For more information on Tokie Rome-Taylor