Dina Torrans

ArtAscent Gold Artist of the 2024 Abstract call for artists.

Soft colour fields contrasting with a bright and flashy frame, found objects and elements masterfully placed on the canvas. Dina Torrans’ artworks appear more like constellations than random combinations, playing with textures and weights of different materials.

The artist Dina escapes the traditional two-dimensionality of the canvas; her three-dimensional works on paper are somewhere between painting and sculpture. They are hybrid works, which appear vital precisely because of their mixed nature.

Looking at her works is like looking through the lens of a microscope and discovering an imaginary realm, a miniature ecosystem governed by fantastic laws. Dina collects found objects: torn maps or pieces of sheets, raw elements and stones, feathers and copper, and then finds an artistic collocation for them. Her skilful craftsmanship work becomes a creative process of selection and match in search of a personal balance. Dina’s artistic series comes to life during her combinatory gesture. None of those objects would make sense taken individually. The artist is inspired by the ultimate interconnectedness that characterizes our planet: the total is much more than the sum of its parts.

Dina’s approach is abstract and organic. It feeds on a more intuitive and free-flowing dialogue with materials and then integrates with a detail-oriented approach. The spontaneity mixed with compositional logic makes her creative process so magical.

From a technical point of view, Dina is also a skilled combiner. She masterfully mixes painting, often done en plein air in places like India, Mexico, and Canada, with the sculptural aspect added once back in her studio. The mixed environment—inspiration from outside and reflection carried out in the studio—is fuel for creativity.

Dina Torrans’ artistic practice is set in a varied scenario of art references. Her skilful use of found, even insignificant, elements is reminiscent of the bottle-top installations of the famous Ghanaian artist El Anatsui or the famous found objects tables of Daniel Spoerri or Arman. Her colourful and sophisticated combination are dynamic and lightweight, like a hanging Calder.

Dina’s abstraction transcends mere painting and enters the domain of installation art. Working in Toronto for over twenty-five years as an artist and as an instructor in the Sculpture and Printmaking departments of the Art Centre of Central Technical School, her artistic career is widely renowned. Her works have been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions. They are included in private and public collections, such as the Canadian Sculpture Centre in Toronto. They have also won recent international awards, like the Leonardo Prize in Milan and the Michelangelo Prize in Rome. She also represented Canada in the Sculpture Prize in Florence in 2022. Dina Torrans’ three-dimensional works on paper are internationally appreciated and recognized for their multimedia approach and ability to balance nature and artifice, abstraction and logic.

Dina Torrans is the Gold Artist of the ArtAscent Abstract call for artists. To see the full body of work and profile, get a copy of the ArtAscent Art & Literature Journal Abstract issue.


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