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Cassils, Alchemic no.4, 2017, Archival pigment print, plexi faced and aluminum backed. Photo: Cassils with Robin Black.
Cassils has achieved international recognition for a rigorous engagement with the body as a form of social sculpture. Through a practice spanning more than 15 years Cassils has ‘tackled the complicated politics of transgender visibility and its intertwinement with the politics of form’ (Artforum).
Cassils’ first exhibition in Australia features video, photography and sculpture, as well as a presentation of their iconic performance, Becoming an Image.
Habitually using their own body as medium, Cassils changes it through rigorous training and nutrition schedules to create artworks that offer shared experiences for contemplating histories of violence, representation, struggle and survival. Keenly aware of art history, Cassils’ approach to art form and representation re-frames the gaze and subverts art’s historical canon.
Cassils’ body – defiant, strong and transgender – is the through line of their body of work. With breathtaking skill and finesse, the artist uses their body to question attitudes and society structures, revealing the damaging inadequacies of simplistic binaries and mainstream hegemonies of power.