tianna1 I’m a Toronto based artist currently studying for my BFA in Drawing and Painting from OCAD University with a minor in English. My work grows organically from other work and is primarily an exploration of my own sense of femininity. I also deal with thematics of private versus public space, gender politics, cyberfeminism, high art versus low art, and community building. My inspiration comes from my personal life as a woman and the high points and low points of that experience. It is often reinforced by my single mother’s strength and commitment to promoting me as a strong, independent woman.

My work is multidisciplinary taking the form of sculpture, painting, photography, digital art and more. The form is often in service of the message and I use whatever makes sense to me as an artist in order to get my message or thematics across. My work is often strange or humorous, but deals with some very serious and strong opinions.

I hope you enjoy my work, and feel free to contact me at tianna.fowler@yahoo.com with any further questions.

Thesis Artist Statement: I Game, Therefore I Am

Through the lens of feminist gaming this imaginative collection of work explores the whimsical yet critical stance of the female gamer in a male-dominated industry. Video games are not severed from the unwanted and unhealthy depictions of females as object, award, and decoration and with increasing numbers of female players a demand for more realistic and powerful women is being echoed. Wearable art, photography, video work, paintings, t-shirts and virtual experiences collide in this interactive and expanding installation.

At its heart is the series, “I Fight My Battles with Key Bindings.” It showcases suits of transparent material that allows for the character and myself to exist at the same time while being worn. Traditionally a costume would cover up the actor, but in this case the transparency allows for the character and myself to be forged into one. The creation of a strong female protagonist is empowering and allows for reclamation of the female form. The characters’ stories also unfold within their own videogames. The ephemeral experience of game play is core to video game culture and key to providing opportunities for a feminist perspective. Through the interaction with the suit, photos, and game the viewer gains understanding of the character. Partnered with other aspects of motivational speaking, propagandist language, and community building, a message of criticality, exploration, and imagination is delivered.  Videogames are a new media for providing narrative, as a community we must decide to be more critical of the stories we tell and the effect they have.