January 7 – April 7, 2019
Jessica Sallay-Carrington is a Vancouver, B.C. born artist who moved to Montreal, Quebec where she received her BFA in ceramics at Concordia University in 2014. Upon completing her undergrad Jessica continues to produce work in her studio and actively pursues artistic travel opportunities. Attending residencies has brought her to Greece, Italy, Denmark and multiple locations around Canada and USA. Jessica has been apart of many exhibitions in North America as well as a couple in Europe. Her inspirations derive from people who work for gender equality and women who show what it means to “fight like a girl”
Terms used by some people who experience their gender identity and/or gender expression as falling outside the categories of man and woman. They may define their gender as falling somewhere in between man and woman, or they may define it as wholly different from these terms. The term is not a synonym for transgender or transsexual and should only be used if someone self-identifies as non-binary and/or gender queer.
Hello my name is Jessica and I use the pronouns “she/her” and “they/them”. I was raised as a girl and I have a female body to match, but even at a young age I never fit into the mold of what a girl *should* act or look like. I would always feel a pang of pleasure when someone vocalized their confusion about my gender, which is still true today. I am not abandoning my female identity but I don’t feel I fully fit into that gender identity. I have used my art to try and better understand the meaning gender in today’s society and to engage with my community about this topic. The expectations and assumptions society places on ones gender can be heavy and hurtful.
I wish to give others a platform for those who do not fit into the binary system to share their journey and stories. Gender identity is not visible in a person’s appearance so non-binary people are often invisible to the public eye. My sculptures have so far reflected my own experiences so they have been depictions of female bodies. This series will allow me to represent the wide variety of bodies who all approach gender in a different way. I will create five portraits of non-binary models who have volunteered to be a part of the project. Each depicted nude with the head of an animal which they feel represents them. Displayed with each sculpture will be a write-up describing their experience with gender, how they identify and their journey to discover this. In doing this the viewers will see a naked body associated with a gender they might not expect.
To build these sculptures I will need access to 5-6 bags of clay, glazes and a kiln. I will build these figures about 12” tall and all wall-hanging pieces. I intend to work long hours then take breaks to go for nature walks and go to social events to meet the community. I hope to speak to members of the community about this form of personal expression as a way of spreading the awareness of gender identity and letting people know they are not alone. If there is the space for it I could also hold a workshop, teaching my more advanced building techniques to people with experience with clay, or a beginners class.