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Currently displayed along the halls of the Vanderbilt Black Cultural Center is an exhibit showcasing the artwork of Tramaine “Trigger” Nixon. Nixon is a rising Nashville based collage artist focused on showcasing her interest in contemporary culture.
“Majority of my work is inspired by the music I listen to and the images that spark my creativity while scrolling on social media,” says Nixon. Not only does Nixon use images from social media, but also magazines and old books. Sealing collages with resin and mounting them inside a picture frame, Nixon is gaining more attention every day.
Followers on her personal Instagram account, @madebytrigger, have had the opportunity to watch the progression of Nixon’s artwork since early 2017. Beginning by sharing posts featuring rows of images separated by whitespace along her bedroom walls, then transitioning into boards with collages framed by colorful backgrounds, and currently constructing collages displayed inside picture frames, Nixon’s artwork has come a long way. According to Nixon, “I want more…” was her intention while elevating to new heights throughout each previous stage of her creation process.
Each collage communicates a new message to Tramaines’ audience. For example, “This is America” is a piece by Nixon that was purchased by the Black Culture Center for its’ ability to say something that words fail to contain. Ultimately, she creates visual displays that invite social media users to re-engage their perspectives about popular trends, icons, and symbols. Heavy right? We know. Luckily, New Dawn was able to attend the opening reception for Nixon’s exhibit and learn a little bit more about the “Trigger” pulled by social trends.
Q & A Recap:
Q: Can you talk about “This is America”?
A: “I feel like this was an opportunity to express myself about what is going on in America. This was my way of being able to share my voice about what’s going on.”
Q: Thoughts about how to use art as a tool for social change?
A: When something happens, social media is booming… Thus younger generations stay involved with this tool. Artist use social media as a main tool.
Q: Are there times when you feel like you can’t create?
A: All the time. Or sometimes I feel like creating, without being in a place to create.
Q: Did you have any arts education?
A: No. Inspired in ATL by the majority of people who go to art shows for fun.
Q: What made you start creating?
A: I was a lonely sophomore living off campus in an apartment by myself with bare walls. Needed something to do besides scrolling on social media. Started on my walls and then the next thing you know, other people started asking me to do their walls.
Q: Have you ever heard of vision boards?
A: Yes. That is funny you asked because in the beginning people thought they were vision boards. It makes sense. If you see that, I am creating vision boards. If that’s what it’s providing you, then go for it.
Q: Can you speak more about the loneliness that inspired you?
A: Sure. I had moved out to Norcross apartments in ATL. I was living in the last apartment, the furthest in the back. Think I was a little depressed. With no cable, all I could do was listen to music and scroll, so I started filling the void with uplifting images that kept me going.
For more about “Trigger”, stayed tuned to her Instagram account. Late fans have been excused.