A Message to Cisgender Artists

Artist’s Note:
A Message to Cisgender Artists reflects on a common trope for cisgender artists, that is to create work about transgender people, but only address the person for their physical characteristics or medical transition. We are both tired of being told that these projects exist to give trans people a voice when we are constantly being silenced. As a result, we have chosen to subvert this narrative and create their own – making it very clear that work centred around this trope is perpetuating harmful stereotypes by encouraging unsafe ways of looking and interacting with trans people.

About the Artists:
Kat Cassar is a queer, non-binary, lens-based artist located in Toronto, Canada. Their work incorporates archival and documentation techniques through film photography, installation, and text. Kat often focuses on creating an installation consisting of audio, video, and sculptural elements made parallel to their photography. Their work focuses on themes of identity and representation, by exploring the roles of language, media, and the objectification of transgender bodies.

Samuel Gratton is a transgender queer artist who works primarily in lens-based media. His work is based in self-portraiture as he explored his identity, as a transgender male. His practice focuses on themes of gender, sexuality, and identity. Working with archives as well as various analogue and experimental processes, Samuel uses his practice to vocalize himself while creating a space for discussion and understanding of issues within the LGBTQ community as a whole.