Dada Masilo

Art Works: Tilly Mint

18 May 15 words: Art Works
Explore the thought processes behind the other-worldly art born from a Mimm Collective artist
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Sacral Sky

I’ve been drawing and painting from a young age. My dad used to paint beautiful landscapes and both parents encouraged my creativity. I originally wanted to do fashion design but, while studying it at college, I realised it didn't give me the creative freedom I wanted. I enjoy the self-expression and, for me, it’s a visual representation of my journey. Whatever I am interested in or learning about will be reflected in my artwork. It is an extension of myself.


This is a photograph I did last year, taken from a series called Tranquil Chaos, inspired by Sam Spreckly – an artist I’ve recently had the privilege of collaborating with. It’s made using paint, but that is as much as I am willing to give away. There is a lot of trial and error involved in my work; I approached this particular series like a science experiment.

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Our Tilleh

I made it because I became fascinated with the in-between states of my paintings. By this, I mean when the paint has not yet settled and the movement and reactions of the paint cause patterns to emerge. I used paints that reacted against each other, and ended up with patterns reminiscent of natural phenomena. Seeing this unfold became a kind of meditation for me.

At the same time, there was a lot of control involved in the work. I became interested in the contrast between this controlled process and the organic outcome. People have described the photos as alternate realities or worlds.

The series of photographs and film took around two or three weeks to make during my final year at Nottingham Trent University. I had a lot of time to make work during my time at university but since I’ve left, it has been difficult to find the time and facilities to create.

I am part of the Mimm Collective family, and I’ve been fortunate enough to be creative in my work with Mimm. The events we do as a collective give us an opportunity to make and collaborate.

I would love to make more film installation work, creating huge sensory installations that immerse the viewer. Ideally, I would like to do this in collaboration with musicians, and would like the work to have a live element.

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