and the minds behind it
Ashley Laufer was an entrepreneur from a young age and was driven to share her art with others. Graduating from Edinboro University of Pennsylvania with a BFA in Fine Art, Laufer put her honed skills as a traditional illustrator and digital designer to work, selling original prints and stickers through Etsy. She officiated that business in 2017 and rebranded it as misslaufer in 2020. Although she found some success through selling her work she strived to provide more to the community. Laufer wanted to find a way to spread her accumulated knowledge to others, but had trouble finding a way to reach the artistic masses.
Kate Roussell had graduated from the University of Washington with a BFA in Arts, Media & Culture but struggled to find her niche in the artistic industry. Finding work in an office instead of in front of a canvas, Roussell cultivated her administrative skills, but never lost her passion for the arts and the artistic community. Roussell began to dream of a way to unite the artistic community under one banner but struggled to bring that dream into reality.
Roussell and Laufer met in the midst of their individual challenges with connecting and locating the artistic community. Roussell was an artistic minded partner in crime for Laufer. Together they found a balance between art and office, combining their dreams to create The Anxious Tomato.
The Anxious Tomato is more than a simple art gallery. It strives to provide more education and accessibility to art and artists in Tacoma and the surrounding areas. The Anxious Tomato aspires to be an experience for the public, ensuring that every individual involved leaves with a renewed view of art and the artists behind it.