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Jose Torres Tama
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About the Artist
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Jose Torres Tama was born in Ecuador, South America and raised in New Jersey and New York. Since 1984, he has been living in New Orleans, a place he describes as his "spiritual home." He is a performance artist, bilingual poet, and visual and installation artist, exploring racial issues and the effects of media on the diverse cultures of the U.S.

His achievements are as varied as the disciplines he works in. He is a recent recipient of a 1998-99 Theatre Fellowship awarded to him by the Louisiana Division of the Arts. Also, he received an award from the National Endowment for the Arts for the development of a new performance entitled $CASINOAMERICA$. In addition, the Arts Council of New Orleans awarded him a grant for We Are Patriots With Dark Faces, a satirical drama which he has toured throughout the country and in parts of Mexico and Canada.

Patriots has received national acclaim, and the Village Voice has said that Torres Tama "treads that dangerously vague turf of performance art gracefully." His touring success has led the Louisiana Division of the Arts to recently select him as one of the top ten performing artists in the state. He is also the recipient of a 1998 Applauso Award from Aqui: New Orleans, a bilingual newspaper, as recognition for his contributions as a Latino artist.

While on tour, his performance of Patriots at Performance Space 122 in New York City was filmed and presented on Manhattan Cable Access as a part of a series called Alive and Kicking from P.S. 122, produced by video artist Charles Dennis. In New Orleans, two documentaries of his work have been produced by the Ecos Latinos Television Series for Cox Cable Television.

Torres Tama's visual art also has garnered awards and critical praise. He has received a Louisiana Purchase Award for his drawings, and the New Orleans Times-Picayune has said that "his most successful drawings recall Goya in ways often chillingly appropriate to contemporary life." Also, he has curated group exhibitions of Latino artists entitled Latin Perspectives I & II at the Contemporary Arts Center and the Bienville Gallery.

Artist StatementVitae


HomeOn Tour$CASINOAMERICA$Ogden Museum ProjectIn Exile Close to the EquatorYouth Performance Projects
Academic Lectures & WorkshopsAmerican Mantra & Other Rituals CDOther Creative Madness and Locuras
Performance Texts, Writings and Poems Multigenerational Community Performances Reviews
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©1999-2012 Jose Torres Tama.