Dina Torrans

Transmutations by Dina Torrans. Gold Artist of the ArtAscent 2023 Spring exhibition.

Made of bronze, marble, wood, and minerals, artist Dina Torrans’ sculptures intertwine and mix. Assembling traditional materials and natural elements, her works are expanding creations, lush and flourishing like spring blossoms.

Dina’s art incorporates the most potent aspect of spring: the ability to move forward. She embodies this constant sense of rebirth in her sculptures, rich in diverse materials, colours, and languages. The artist has a strong connection with the natural world: the inspiration for her objects comes from the variety of forms and textures she encounters outside. Her sculptures are whimsical, as if a breath of life pervaded them. They are co-creations between the human hand and the invisible touch of nature, generating something new and unexpected.

The artist collects found objects and assembles them in nature-inspired forms with a playful and spiritual approach. If, at first glance, Dina’s assemblages may appear random, on closer inspection, one can notice recognizable motifs: arrows, hatches, red crosses or circled details. Her works resemble treasure maps, with directions to follow and destinations to reach. They become metaphors for the paths and choices we decide to take in our world. They are miniature continents through which we move to find our way.

Dina’s style is distinctive. The artist combines classic and traditional techniques, such as sculpture in cast bronze, first modelled in wax, or using marble, cement, and other metals with mixed media and other significative found objects. She incorporates shells, stamps, flowers, fibres, and moss, giving a surrealist flavour to her art. Dina’s artistic practice is a game of correspondence between living and non-living elements. The result is a hybrid system of references. Looking at Dina’s composite sculptures, we are confronted with a Babel of different but intertwined voices, a metaphor for ultimate interconnectedness.

Dina’s systems hark back to a long tradition of abstract assemblages. They recall the automatic scribbles of painters like Cy Twombly, the machines of avant-garde artists like Jean Tinguely, composed of metal and rubber scraps, or the installations of Ghanian artist El Anatsui, made from various recycled elements such as bottle caps, cans, and clay. Dina adds spiritual and literary inspirations to these visual references, such as the poet Rumi or Herman Hesse. Like her works, the reservoir of references she draws is composite: a constellation of bonds.

Dina Torrans has a strong art career. She graduated from the Art Centre of Central Technical School in Toronto, where she also worked as a sculpture and printmaking instructor for ten years. Her sculptures have been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in national and international galleries, like the Canadian Sculpture Centre, The Art Gallery of Ontario and different art museums in Italy. Her artworks can be found in international collections. Looking at her body of work is like accessing an expanding archive, private but speaking of universal systems. Dina Torrans is the Gold Artist of the ArtAscent Spring call for artists. To see the full body of work and profile, get a copy of the ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal Spring issue.


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