“By creating portraits, I communicate an entire story about someone without having to say a single word.”
Tafy LaPlanche, an Afro-Latina portrait artist based in New York City and Savannah, Georgia. She paints dope and vibrant portraits for dope and vibrant people!
This was the first painting of my ‘Las Frutas’ series. She is the embodiment of the souls of my fellow women of color. Celebrating our beauty, boldness, strength, endurance, vibrancy, and so much more. How we keep pushing forward despite everything.
Born and raised in NYC, Tafy was always surrounded by diversity. It made her curious about other cultures and people’s heritage. That upbringing prompted her to travel to meet all kinds of people. And made her passionate in showcasing that within her art.
Amante de la fruta del dragón
I’ve always admired my fellow Puerto Rican sister for her immense individuality. She’s a woman of many looks but never strays from who she is on the inside and embraces her natural beauty. It truly was an honor to paint someone with such vibrance. This portrait serves as a reminder that you can be viewed differently by many people. To not allow that to change your view on yourself. The dragon fruits represent our first meal together when we visited our roots in San Juan.
Being both Puerto Rican and Haitian, throughout her life people always tried to place her in a box of one or the other. With her portraits, she showcases unique individuals who embrace both their culture and who they are outside of that. She also questions society's beauty standards and is a constant theme within her work.
The uniqueness of Tafy’s portraits lie in the fact that they showcase unique individuals who embrace both their culture and who they are outside of that.
At the age of thirteen, she was diagnosed with type one diabetes. She was considered to be one of the older patients and did not have priority over the Nintendo 64. She was given paper and a pen instead. Her days at the hospital were filled with drawing people as they passed by her room. This prompted her mother to put her in an art school. However, she was placed in a school where they only spoke Mandarin! There she learned to draw portraits and paint landscapes. Despite the language barrier, she realized how art in itself was a universal language.
When her mother placed her in an art school, it was in one where they only spoke Mandarin! This is where she realized how despite the language barrier, art in itself was a universal language.