Meet Tonja Sell
I was born in rural northern Wisconsin in 1968, studied at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design - MIAD and received the Regent Scholarship at Arizona State University, Phoenix, AZ. My repertoire includes drawing, painting, ceramic and metal sculpture, glass-blowing and fusing textiles and more.
The Pre-Raphaelites, Impressionists, Expressionists as well as my very creative and supportive parents are among those who have influenced my work.
"I was creating something all of the time as a child, my parents gave me opportunity to explore. That is something I am very grateful for. I live with my husband Matthew, also a MIAD graduate in the field of Industrial Design, and our four children in the home/studio that we designed and built together.
While my work incorporates a wide range of media and subject including landscapes and natural themes, the female form is a reoccurring focus. Often depicted in a narrative setting. "I appreciate work that draws me into someone's experience. A point in time, a moment, that I can become a part of. The human element is important to me. There is inspiration everywhere: a glance observed, patterns of light and shadow created on drapery, texture of leaves on the damp forest floor. An artist is a reporter of sorts, capturing something of personal import and conveying it through unique interpretation to their "readers." I love that process. Working it out and making it my own."
Though I have been working artistically over the years, I still consider myself an emerging artist. The home-education of our children has been my primary focus. Now that they are becoming more independent I am able to devote a larger portion of my time to my art.
I am currently focusing on drawing, painting, wool felting and ceramic-glass sculpture. "I am devoted to experimentation at this stage of life. I enjoy so many things and there is so much to learn. I am excited to see where the process takes me and look forward to the journey."