Artist Statement

I am a birmingham and London based artist who uses a range of media to explore socially constructed ideas and challenging different ways of thinking. Currently, I am focusing on challenging and celebrating different elements of womanhood. I am looking at femininity as a performance that most women have to put on daily in order to fit into societies outdated norms.

The mediums I use vary between Painting, photography, collage, textiles, print, video and sculpture. I dont like to limit myself to specific mediums and processes so I can create endless possibilities. I enjoy working with materials that give me unreliable results as it can create exciting outcomes that are unexpected.

I have researched feminist theorist like Laura Mulvey, Julia Kristeva and Betty Friedan who helped develop by base knowledge on feminism and misogyny. This research shaped the my work as the decisions I made reflected Mulvey’s Male Gaze theory and Kristeva’s psychoanalysis of the Abject as my work is constantly trying to reframe the male gaze and some of my work is abject. My project now focuses on femininity that isn’t just confined to a female identity, but as one that is expansive beyond the binary.

'The Marks Of My Body’ celebrates my body but criticises performing femininity. Performing femininity comes from the idea that in order to be perceived feminine enough for society, we perform certain acts, almost ritualistically, like wearing makeup, wearing uncomfortable shoes or clothing and giving in to dieting culture to maintain unhealthy eating habits . Women, (this includes anyone who identifies as a woman) are constantly subject to uphold norms of society in order to fit in. If they don't act or present themselves in a certain way, they are criticised. The definition of being a woman has changed yet these standards have not. My body does not define my gender, but it plays a big part in how I represent myself. There are marks within the painting that are subtle and distinguishable like strands of hair, fabric and breasts which becomes less sexualised when they aren’t so apparent. As the canvases are placed above, the viewer is able to see and feel the shift in power as they become submissive to the pieces they are looking up at. Femininity is often taken as a weakness. I wanted to challenge this idea as it can be a weakness to some, it can also be a powerful form of expression and allows people to claim control over their representation. Having the piece on the floor shifts the power and symbolises that femininity can also be a part of them that holds them back.

‘The Roots of Femininity’ is about fertility and childbirth being an act of femininity and not what defines ones gender. I chose to use resin for its transparency. I wanted to be able to see the plants roots and all the soil so the growth of the plant could be seen through its journey. The plants represent growth and birth which is a part of femininity rather than being a woman. A lot of ciswomen along with transwomen cannot have children. A lot of people make the mistake of linking childbirth and fertility with being a woman when this is not always something all women relate to.