Daily, women like myself are attacked on (at least) two fronts: by visual representation and by our roles within society. The internet and information technology are powerful tools for feminism and progressive ideas, but with influence from the media, pop culture, advertisements, the entertainment industry, and contemporary politics, the image of a beautiful, sexy woman has been reduced to wide hips, long legs, large breasts, big butts, and tiny waists, and the roles for women are continuously reinforced to be submissive, passive, overemotional, weak, incapable of intellect, etc. Our patriarchal society desires to control “woman.” I am interested in how individuals and society are involved in the construction of contemporary identity through visual representations and roles. I am interested in how society views, interacts with, uses, and transforms women, and also how it doesn’t. I myself, both purposefully and inescapably, participate in the world and certain structures which I also criticize. I live and make in contradictions.
I also live in the internet. I live in the real world, too, but so much of my life has also involved living in the internet. I have a digital self that rarely resembles my physical self and only occasionally represents my mental self (or so it would seem). I am as much my online aliases as I am otherwise. At the same time, I am also reacting to the world around me, as a young woman and as a feminist, in a society that continues to suppress and oppress women. Like most people, my identity is a construction and an interpretation, pluralistic and complicated, transformed by my experiences within both the digital and physical worlds.
Concepts/subjects that inform my work include, but are not limited to: feminism (particularly third wave and cyborg feminism), the contemporary roles and representations of women, the virtual/physical world/border, the male gaze, internet and video gaming culture, politics and current events, chatrooms and forums, animations and cartooning, characters and their development, and so forth. Specifically, these influences include: Donna Haraway, Cindy Sherman, Hayao Miyazaki, Naoko Takeuchi, Hoogerbrugge, et al.
Some of my concerns include: 1) How both technology and the internet play a role in Feminism; how it tends to reinforce sexism while also being an opportunity for liberation and progressive thought. 2) The visual representation of women in entertainment animation, video games, comics, and within society. 3) The interactions with and treatment of women in the entertainment industry, in politics, at the individual level, within society, and in the digital world.
I would like (hope) to communicate (illustrate): the hypocrisies; the representation and roles of women; the mis/treatment and/or mis/representation of women; the changing definition of women; the current struggles, challenges, and injustices facing women/feminism today in both the physical and virtual realms. My motivations include: observations and experiences within and between the physical/digital world(s), sexism/patriarchy/capitalism/militarism/corporatism, the potential of technology, the inequalities and injustices here and abroad, etc.
Art, for me, is the exploration and the journey: ideas in progress. It invites and provokes conversation. When I make art, I sometimes feels like I’m participating in a form of activism, and I’d like to believe that I am making a difference in the world through what I make as an artist. I am interested in how it prompts us to contemplate and question societal structures, producing and influencing an increased sense of awareness and maybe even inspiring action. I want to be a storyteller.