Recent Art Graduate Has Full Plate

Photo of Tavarus Blackman with a group of his paintings

In the seven months since completing his degree, Tavarus Blackmon (M.F.A., art, '18) has been busy.

He has a solo exhibition, “Exquisite Diversion,” at Verge Center for the Arts in Sacramento until March 24 and will be part of an art and engineering event at Sacramento’s Hacker Lab on March 9. He has also been featured on Capital Public Radio and in The Sacramento Bee and the Feb. 21 issue of the Sacramento News & Review. At the end of the year, he will have a solo exhibition at Axis Gallery in Sacramento. 

The Sacramento native and resident is currently a graduate fellow at the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin County, where his work will be featured during the center’s open house on April 14. He is also a father to three children, the youngest born just a few weeks before he finished his degree.

Blackmon, who also goes by the moniker Blackmonster, creates in a variety of mediums including painting, video, printmaking, installation, sound and digital. His art addresses serious issues such as the proliferation of gun violence, police shootings, race, class and family, but often brings in contrasting bright, wild colors and shapes, 3-D techniques and cartoonish images.

The work has serious repercussions,” he said, “but I also want it to be playful. I want to have a middle ground where I'm not telling people what to think, but providing them an opportunity to reflect.”

Blackmon, who was a Provost’s Fellow at UC Davis, has also exhibited at The Midway in San Francisco, American Steel Studios in Oakland, The Center for Digital Art in Los Angeles, FE Gallery and BrickHouse Gallery in Sacramento, and the Blue Banana Video Art Festival in Berlin.