Hynes’ work tells the intimate story of the place of the individual within a relentless and unforgiving extraction industry. Her closeness to extractive mining in Labrador City has given her a unique, incisive perspective of the industry and the community that developed around it. Writer Dana Prieto notes that the activity of iron ore mining historically founded, geographically surrounded and financially sustained Hynes’ hometown. Prieto situates Labrador City as a place of proximities and relations: “the rock, the paint and the smog; the vernacular and spectacular; the secretive and conspicuous; the airy, smooth and heavy; the transient, broken and eternal; the mythical and lived experience.” After so many stories told, local myths withhold secrets and the ghosts of physical and environmental health haunt Tanea’s work, like the cloud hovering overhead.
Tanea Hynes is a 3rd generation open-pit mine worker, self-identified socialist, and woman of colonial-settler ancestry. Her works take an autobiographical and documentary approach to focus on the complex nature of extractive industries and the place of corporations within small, isolated towns. Through her images and works of various media, Hynes intends to build an intimate personal map of survival as a young woman, a hopeless romantic, and a worker under late-stage capitalism. Hynes has shown work across North America and published a book entitled WORKHORSE in 2021. Hynes received the Hitting The High Notes fellowship (2020) and is the 2021 winner of the Roloff Beny Foundation fellowship in photography.