Tracia Burton

Tracia Burton, Bob Marley
stencil on newsprint, 12.5 x 16.25 in, 2015

Tracia Burton, Frida Kahlo
stencil on archival paper, 17 x 11.25 in, 2015

Tracia Burton brings us into a new direction in photographic media as painting. Burton is a printmaker with degrees in photography and art therapy from Pratt Institute. A Jamaican national, she has long divided her time between New York City and Kingston, where she has a studio.

In her portraits of "heroes of Jamaica" and of artists, athletes, and luminaries of the world, Tracia Burton achieves subtlety and a painterly touch using cut-out stencils. Her work lies between printmaking and painting, since each "print" is a unique and carefully applied image. Burton's work comes in small editions of 10 or 20 prints, and some of her images are unique "editions" of one.

visit Tracia Burton's collection at our online store

artist's website

Burton's work is about the passage of a document from its first appearance in a political or cultural sphere, and through ever-changing iterations, interpretations, and textures. Her portraits are often derived from well-known photographs, but they are not photomechanical reproductions. Each image is made from a carefully hand-cut stencil. They are an artist's interpretation of the subject, and on close examination are in fact quite different from the original photograph. Time and accumulated knowledge accrue to these icons, the artistic process changes and inflects them, and yet the pulse of their first appearance is never lost.

At the gallery we have always maintained archives of printed matter from the history of the Brooklyn art scene. We take seriously the "ephemeral" aspect of a discourse, not just its formal production of art. Burton gives us a long-awaited opportunity to consider printmaking and history also as fine art for the gallery walls.

— ep, 3/4/16

Tracia Burton, Nina Simone
stencil on wooden slats, 14 x 7.5 in, 2015