Artist Tiffany Lawson presents a solo exhibition at the Ohio State College Club

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From humble materials like brown paper bags, plastic onion sacks, pillow stuffing, twigs, and newspaper and magazine clippings, Tiffany Lawson creates collage works that tell stories.

One piece pays homage to the South Columbus neighborhood where he grew up. One retells the Exodus story. And another pays tribute to his mother, as well as a dozen other strong women.

They are all on view in “Contemporary Coloured: Paintings, Mixed Media Art and Assemblages,” Lawson’s solo exhibition of 28 works at Ohio State University Teachers Club. The exhibit is run by art coordinator Lisa Craig Morton, who has been following the young artist’s works for about 10 years.

By day, Lawson works as a law clerk at the Franklin County Municipal Court, but at night, at her home on the East Side, the self-taught 39-year-old makes art.

When she was growing up, Lawson’s mother ran a children’s art program at Ohio Avenue United Methodist Church, drawing African-American artists such as Aminah Robinson, Queen Brooks, Richard Duarte Brown and Gilda Edwards, who Lawson said inspired her.

The same kind of color, vibrancy, and storytelling qualities that stand out in the works of those artists can be seen in Lawson’s pieces, especially his large three-panel collage, “Around the Way, USA.” This lively street scene captures the neighborhood where he grew up with a variety of materials: magazine clippings, doll cloth, tree twigs, acrylic paint, and a base of brown paper bags with handles visible at each end.

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