Latinx Artist Fellowship

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Maria Cristina (Tina) Tavera

Multidisciplinary Artist

Minneapolis, MN

Instagram @tina.tavera

As a multidisciplinary artist, I explore different artistic methods to share societal, political, and cultural commentary. My creative energy originates from a long tradition of artmaking as my family in Mexico are artists and artisans. This includes my great grandfather and my great-great grandfather, who were both printers. As a bilingual, bicultural Chicana with dual nationality, my print themes vary and often reference my nostalgia for Mexico as well as reflect my Midwest upbringing as thick as my Minnesota accent. 

Maria Cristina (Tina) Tavera (she/her) is a multidisciplinary artist whose work examines signifiers determined by our society on how people define themselves and their cultures in everyday life. The work focuses on the Latinidad within the U.S. via numerous mediums including printing, sculpture, installation, public art. 

Tavera has exhibited nationally and internationally, and her artwork can be found in the collections of the City of Minneapolis Public Art, Weisman Art Museum, Fargo Plains Museum, Oglethorpe Museum, Tweed Museum of Art, Minnesota History Center, and the Biblioteca Central de Cantabria, Santander, Spain. She has published curatorial statements and art criticism with the Walker Art Center and Minneapolis Institute of Arts, as well as a book titled, Mexican Pulp Art (Press: Feral House, 2007).

Tavera has received a Master of Leadership in the Arts from the Humphrey School at the University of Minnesota (2007) and fellowships and grants from the McKnight Visual Artist Fellowship, Bush Leadership Fellowship, Shannon Leadership Institute, Smithsonian Latino Museum Studies program, Museum of Modern Art-New York, Forecast Public Art, Minnesota State Arts Board, Metropolitan Regional Arts Council (MRAC), and Institute of Mexicans Abroad (IME). Tavera is an artist, curator, education activist, and cultural organizer. She has traversed the boundaries of cultures with a bi-national, bicultural upbringing and holds dual citizenship in Mexico and United States. Her curatorial work includes Thirty-Three Views Plus Two for Second Shift Studio Space, a pop-up exhibition co-curated with artist Chris Larson; the international exhibition, Sus Voces: Women Printmakers from Mexico at Highpoint Center for the Arts as part of the Guerilla Girls Twin Cities Takeover; and Mexico 1810/1910/2010: Artemio Rodriguez with a series of cultural celebrations. Since 2019, she has served as the founding executive director of Serpentina Arts, an arts collaborative dedicated to promoting the professional and creative development of Minnesota Latinx visual artists.

Selected Works

A tent-like structure fashioned from burlap coffee bean sacks stands in a gallery in front of a wall with tortillas hung on it.
A woman with long braids and brown skin sits in front of a phone operators’ panel. Her braids extend from her head to form circles displaying images of a person wearing a mask, a crowd holding protest signs, and a shopping bag against a colorful backdrop.
A film still in black and white shows two feet in a pair of low-heeled white shoes against a desert landscape.