For sisters Tonya and Sonel Rowley, painting has always been a favourite hobby. Art has provided needed relaxation from their very busy schedules–Tonya, 26, is a lawyer while Sonel, 24, is studying a PhD in educational psychology at Fordham University.
The painters have amassed a body of work which, according to Tonya, they "just want to share."
The paintings will be shared at a joint exhibit at the Art Society of T&T from April 12-20. The exhibit will include 34 pieces of acrylic on canvas depicting T&T landscape and culture.
In a telephone interview on Friday, Tonya said there would also be pieces in oil and a few abstracts–something new the sisters are experimenting with.
This is the second joint exhibit for the Rowleys. The first exhibit was in 2008 at Horizons Art Gallery.
Among the paintings in the exhibit will be depictions of Hosay in St James and scenes from Tobago. Tonya said the local landscape was a continuing source of inspiration.
"I think our local landscape and the culture itself has a certain vibrancy that already lends itself to the colours," she said.
"Colours are the hallmark of my work. It's the thing that defines my work the most and something people often remark on."
Tonya added that she sometimes paints using photographs which adds a unique point-of-view to the paintings and allows her to re-interpret the scenery.
Although Sonel's artwork deals with the same subject matter as Tonya's, her work is more "textured." Tonya said there was a contrast between the two bodies of work as they used different techniques.
Tonya and Sonel have been painting since high-school. Both have participated in the Women in Art Biennial competition, winning awards for best landscape/seascape, graphics, still lifes and portraits. The sisters also exhibited in the 2012 Women in Art annual show.
Both sisters have had artwork included in private and corporate collections locally and some of their pieces have been added to the Oval Art project.
The exhibit takes place at the Art Society of T&T, corner of St Vincent Avenue and Jamaica Blvd, Federation Park, St Clair.
Gallery hours are from 10 am to 6 am during the week and from 10 am to 2 pm on weekends.
For more information email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Samples of Tonya's work can also be viewed on her Web site: www.tonyarowley.com.