Welcome to my blog! Visit my Website at WWW.ARTBYTANYATORRES.COM to see the galleries organized by theme.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Spirits of El Yunque (Dryads)

Spirit of El Yunque, 2 Hibiscus (Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015

Spirit of El Yunque, Six Flowers  (Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015

Spirit of El Yunque (Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015

Yukiyú, Spirit of El Yunque (Male Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015

Spirit of El Yunque (Male Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015

Spirit of El Yunque, Flower and Hibiscus (Dryad), acrylic on tile, 6" x 6", 2015
Come by this Saturday 12-7 pm to Hostos Community College in the Bronx to see these new tiles and lots of new jewelry pieces at the Comité Noviembre Puerto Rican Art and Crafts yearly fair! I will be there all day, first floor.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Dryads (on Tile)

A dryad is a tree nymph, or tree spirit (in Greek mythology.) For me, these are thoughts about life, nature and the interconnection of all living beings.

Rain Forest Dryad by Tanya Torres, Acrylic on Tile, 6" x 6", 2015. 
Flower Eyes Dryad by Tanya Torres, Acrylic on Tile, 6" x 6", 2015.

Leaves Dryad by Tanya Torres, Acrylic on Tile, 6" x 6", 2015.

Dryad by Tanya Torres, Acrylic on Tile, 6" x 6", 2015.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


Mary Magdalene, Our Lady of Fire is now at David's home.
A photo shared by David Haas: on his wall. Mary Magdalene, Our Lady of Fire is now at David's home. Thank you David! I'm honored my Magdalene is in your home and has been at the Taizé!

Thursday, September 10, 2015


Dryad by Tanya Torres, drawing 
Dryad by Tanya Torres, drawing 
These are some drawings to open the mind for new large paintings.

First, they will be paintings on tile for next week's Fiesta de Flores at the New York Botanical Garden.

These are from the sketch book, made to call on the dryad spirits for inspiration and a little push forward!

Sunday, August 09, 2015


Emergence/Surgimiento by Tanya Torres
Oil on Canvas, 60" x 40", 2015.
This is the first finished piece of my new series, something I have been wanting to work on for several years now. It is a large piece inspired by the idea that humans are literally a part of the earth.

The earth is our mother, we inherit and share her every vibration, proportion and material. Our heart beats at the same rate as her heart. We are like the salted water of the sea. We emerge from her as a child emerges from her mother.

As for me, the image is close to my heart: emerging anew after a year of change, little deaths of old stories taking their last breaths, and a new face cleansed in the living waters of the present. Every change is hard. Every rebirth is beautiful.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

A Magdalene on Mary Magdalene's Day

Magdalena, Acrylic on Canvas, 10" x 10",  2014.

Thinking of the Magdalene and all the guidance she has given me through the years. I am especially grateful for all the "love letters" from magdalene sisters and brothers around the world, most of them at times when I really needed an extra little push to keep going. Thank you St. Mary Magdalene, for all your love!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Para-Sol Expo: Sunrise Parasol

Melissa Mark Viverito invited me to participate in project Para-Sol Expo, started by artists in Puerto Rico and now on view at La Marqueta (115 street and Park Avenue) here in East Harlem. This is my parasol, before leaving the studio. Thank you Melissa for thinking of me!

Sunrise Parasol by Tanya Torres por Para-Sol Expo. Photo by Juan V. Nunez.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Murals by Tanya Torres - Schools in NYC

These are the murals and mosaics I created between 2006 and 2010 at the East Harlem Bilingual Head Start (116 street and Pleasant Avenue) and P.S. 57 (115 street between Lexington Avenue and 3rd Avenue) This video was made by Elisa Perea. The music is by Anonymous 4, some of the music I listened to while placing thousands of little mosaic pieces to create these images.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Children's Book Illustrations

This are illustrations I created this month for author Graciano Matos, who wrote a story for his little granddaughter.

Recent Mary Magdalene research presented Mary Magdalene as a Artemis/Queen Bee, and when Graciano mentioned the book was about a little bee… I could not say no. 

Take a look!

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Infinite Mercy

Jasmine with Infinite Mercy, Oil on Canvas, 36" x 24", 2014.
This piece was commissioned by Jasmine Gomez for her office in her new job at the New York Archdioceses.  It was a pleasure to paint since I just had to make my own image bigger. I like the idea of reworking an image to work with someone's specific needs. It is a way to serve through art.

The best part was Jasmine's big smile when she saw the piece!

Monday, March 02, 2015

Mary Magdalene of the Roses is Back At Home

Mary Magdalene of the Roses, by Tanya Torres, Oil on Canvas, 60" x 40", 2010.

A few months ago, I received a call from a friend letting me know that Holy Rosary Church in East Harlem would be closing. This made me very sad, for many reasons, including that I didn't know what would happen to the painting Mary Magdalene of the Roses.

I had some time ago read about what happens to art when churches in New York City close, and for this reason I had asked my friend there to let me know if they finally decided to close the church. The Archdiocese of New York had been trying to close Holy Rosary for several years now, but the congregation was not happy about it. Many of them had attended that church their entire lives, and it held a lot of history and memories. I had only met my friends there a few years ago, but it hurt a great deal to learn the bad news. I was also afraid this painting would end up in a moldy basement. But thanks to my beloved friend, it is now safe at home.

Several people had asked over the years if they could purchase it, but it was something I made for Holy Rosary, and I was really happy that it was there. It was really sad news to hear the church would be closing, since I got to meet and love the people there, especially the group of ladies who nourished my soul with their love and kind words over the years. At Holy Rosary, I created and taught art, repaired saints, created poetry, helped paint the church, helped decorate the Santo Niño de Cebú shrine, and above all benefitted from the love of a community that didn't know me or expect anything from me. This was enormously healing.

But one day, the old priests were sent back to Spain (they were very old and in bad health), and a new pair of priests were borrowed from nearby Our Lady of Mount Carmel. They were not happy to be there, and it showed.

No more poetry, no more art. The environment got transformed so rudely and so suddenly that I could no longer get myself to show up. And I wondered what would happen to the painting, and If I would be able to smuggle it out of the building.

I had "donated" it, but no papers were signed, so it was technically mine. I didn't want to steel it back! But since nobody trusted the new management, I had to go with my intuition and as soon as my friend called, I was there to get it. My husband Juan and I covered it in black plastic bags and smuggled it out in the middle of the day from the dark church basement. The upper church had been closed for years now, and mass takes place in the lower level, which also means nobody was there to stop me.

I think the right place for it would be at another church. For now it is in my new studio at home, where the old Mixta Gallery used to be. And I am glad, because it is one of my favorites. If you would like to visit and see it in person, let me know! I will make you tea! (Remember "Tea with Tanya"? Coming back very soon…!) And if you know of a good, appropriate, responsible, respectful and loving spiritual place for it, also let me know!

But back to the painting. It also can be attributed a little miracle.

When I was getting ready to draw the canvas, I wanted to buy yellow roses to draw. But I looked all over my neighborhood, and no yellow roses were available.

When I first stepped into Holy Rosary for the funeral of my friend's mother, I had met a woman there who became my friend, someone who, together with the priest (who read the poem I wrote in honor my friend's mother during the mass, and who is also a poet), she and he held my hands and asked me if I could help them bring poetry to the church.

I grew up with a mix of Catholicism and Socialism, and for most of my life, I tried to stay away from churches, but at this point in my life, I could not say no to such a request. The Magdalene had brought me there, and I had to follow through.

For several years I created a poetry publication to publish in the church bulletin. Most of my Heaven and Earth drawings came out of that work.

But that was not the miracle. I looked and looked for yellow roses, and nothing. That same weekend the woman, Judy, visited me, and brought me a gift: very fresh, very beautiful, Yellow Roses. And she had no idea I was looking for yellow roses!

The roses lasted long enough to draw and paint them. And they live on in this images of Mary Magdalene, Our Lady of Lexington Avenue.


Here is the poem that began this adventure:

I Was

I was a woman,
who loved.
Now I am love.

I was a woman,
who looked up to the sky, and wished to fly.
Now I am flight.

I was a mother,
and today I am creation.

I was voice, warmth
and the resounding flow of blood
within the borders of my body.
Now I am silence that rests
in the coming and going
of my beloved hearts.

I was that which reflected a shadow,
Now, I am intense light,
in the infinite space of my being.

I was a limit in time,
but today, wholeness embraces me, 
and I embrace wholeness.

I was many things that come to an end.
Now I am infinite eternity,
Within each new and small sprouting of life.

I still am who I always have been.

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

New Hand-Painted Jewelry

These mini abstract paintings are made with pearlescent acrylic inks on rives paper. In the first photo you can see part of the original painted paper. I then look for a composition I like, and cut it to size. To complete the piece,  I choose a setting and place the painting under a glass cabochon. These are the ornate pieces. The new round large Magical Medallions are also finished. Coming soon! (Or come by and visit for a better look!)   

Inner Earth Set.

Inner Earth Small Medalion

Purple Spirit Lights Set.

Pink Expansion Set. Delicate pink for sweet thoughts and friendship.

Blue Water Set. 
Blue like the Caribbean Sea… If we can't be there, we can carry it close to the Heart.

Yellow Flight Earrings.

Purple Spirit Set.

Green Universe Earrings. Green full of Hope.

Do you recognize the model!?