Picture Day #2, 2012. Monotype screenprint, with hand-coloring and collage. 50 x 38 inches. Collection of Mary Jo and Donald Layden, Milwaukee, WI.

Milwaukee, WI


Tyanna Buie’s mixed-media prints are intimate reflections on her childhood. The three portraits included in the Triennial exhibition are based on early images of her now-grown brother and two sisters. Given their chaotic upbringing within the foster care system, Buie and her siblings possess few physical reminders from their youth to carry into the present. Excavating her own memories and those of her family, the artist collages specific imagery into each portrait. These elements—toys, bits of clothing, jewelry, hair accessories, and other youthful adornments—serve as stand-ins for those tangible mementos that were lost long before. Emotionally-charged memorials to her complicated childhood, Buie’s screenprints are also universally resonant as mediations on memory, history, and familial loss.


Tyanna Buie was born in Chicago, Illinois and currently lives in Milwaukee, where she teaches at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. She received her MFA from the University of Wisconsin–Madison in 2010. She has shown extensively, most recently in Current Tendencies III at the Haggerty Museum of Art, and in Wisconsin 30, an exhibition at the Milwaukee Art Museum that featured thirty African American artists living and working in Wisconsin. In 2012, Buie became the first African American woman to win the Mary L. Nohl Fellowship, the most important prize for individual artists in Milwaukee.

Behind the Scenes

Tyanna Buie: A Brief Conversation