Tania Qurashi


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Artist's Biography

Tania Qurashi (b. New Jersey) is a painter based in Philadelphia. Qurashi attended The University of the Arts in Philadelphia and received a BFA in Interdisciplinary Fine Arts in 2016. She is currently a graduate candidate at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. She has attended a residency at the School of Visual Arts in New York City and completed the Tyler School of ArtSummer Painting & Sculpture Intensive in Philadelphia, PA, and a residency at Goldsmiths College in London, UK. Qurashi has exhibited her work in group exhibitions including Asian Arts Initiative, Stella Elkins Gallery, Anne Bryan Gallery and The University of the Arts.

Artist's Statement

Undefined feelings of longing for a route of escape emerge from experiences of isolation and exclusion. Through paintings and drawings, I attempt to provide narratives of longing. Informed by my own cultural background asa Pakistani-Guatemalan American, I consider identity to be unreliable, misunderstood, and often mischaracterized.

With muted palettes, awkward brush strokes, and iridescent surfaces, the paintings retain traces of adolescence through characters that contain angst and ambiguity. Informed by alternative music that evokes a reflective and melancholic state, the work considers the way in which we use music as an escape and as a means of forming an identity after constant mischaracterization. Since adolescences a time when our identities are most unstable, music potentially provides an escape from the conflict between our internal and external self.

An attempt of reconciliation with the self through partial space and windows affirms our identities as outsiders looking in and out into places in which we no longer have access to. The objects are charged with personal and cultural longing to reflect how the things we collect, possess, and lose overtime define who we are. Music and objects become vessels of exchange between cultures and generations, as well as channels to explore the romantic, religious, personal, and the political. The experiences, possessions, and possibilities that we collect over time allow us to reflect upon ourselves and come to an understanding of our authentic selves.

Selected Exhibitions

Reflection(s), Anne Bryan Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

The Imploring Surface, Stella Elkins Gallery, Philadelphia, PA

National Prize Show, Kathryn Schultz Gallery, Cambridge, MA

A More Perfect Union, Asian Arts Initiative, Philadelphia, PA

Where Your Garden Grows, The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA

Relic Futura, Circle of Hope, Philadelphia, pa

Offspring, Gallery One, Philadelphia, PA

Artist's Bibliography

"Portraiture Engaging Ideas Of Fiction And Romance Tania Qurashi", Create! Magazine, Issue XVII, October 28, 2019

Wunderkind Magazine

Lin, Alie, "Act I and II," Asian Arts Initiative, August 2, 2017

TOURMALINE, "Interview – Tania Qurashi," fēlan zine, January 19, 2017

Professional Experience

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Form and Structure Drawing and Painting with Jill Rupinski (Undergraduate)

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Artists Writing with Kaitlin Pomerantz (Low-residency MFA)

The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Figure Painting with Bruce Samuelson (Undergraduate)

Awards & Scholarships

InLiquid, Philadelphia, PA
Wind Young Fellowship, Honorable Mention

Roberta Treatman Eisenberg Memorial Scholarship

Viola Foulke Scholarship

Ernest W. Greenfield Annual Memorial Award in Painting

Artistic Excellence Award MFA Scholarship


The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
MFA Candidate

Goldsmiths College, London, England
Summer Residency

Tyler School of Art & Architecture, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA
Painting and Sculpture Summer Intensive

The School of Visual Arts, New York, NY
Summer Residency

The University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA
BFA, Interdisciplinary Fine Arts, Concentration in Painting and Drawing