Tori Tinsley (born 1980) received a BFA from the University of Michigan Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design, an MAAT from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and an MFA from the Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design at Georgia State University. Tori is a 2017 Artadia Atlanta Finalist, 2016 Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors Grant recipient, a 2016-17 Wathall Fellow, a 2016 City of Atlanta Emerging Artist Award and Project Grant recipient, and a 2015 Idea Capital Grant recipient. Tori is represented by Hathaway Contemporary Gallery in Atlanta, GA.


About the work

My paintings explore my changing relationship with myself and with my mother as she succumbs to a brain disease called fronto-temporal degeneration. Through the interaction of two figures, I convey the challenging emotional experience of such an ambiguous loss; feelings that include despair, longing, disbelief, and even hope. This focus on myself is not meant to diminish the importance of my mother’s experience with this disease, but to add to the discussion and awareness of what happens to those left behind to pick up the pieces. These works not only serve as premature memorials to my mother, but they also stand as monuments to resilience and highlight how painting can serve as a proxy for reconnection.

To learn more about fronto-temporal degeneration, visit