I am drawn to identity, community, nature, and ambiguous abstractions through which any interpretation and feeling is welcome. Whether in photography or in drawing, I often engage in portraiture; faces hone our senses and produce expressions which can be windows to the soul. My methods of portraiture have allowed me to empower and invite reflection for various characters that may walk among us. Living and working within Canada, my emphasis on people and humanity is from an inclusive and informed lens, striving to be anti-oppressive, facing gender, race, and class issues while appropriately relating work to autoethnographic origins when necessary. My love and respect for natural environments seeps into my work as a meditation on land and our respective connections to it; highlighting migratory realities for many populations residing in Canada. My materials include but are not limited to found objects, post-consumer fiber, ink, acrylic, pastel, and not-so-obsolete analog photo and video technologies.
Globally, there has been a spotlight on our bodies for the last two years of the pandemic. This spotlight has taken microscopic form through invasive tests up our noses to determine the dreaded negative or positive result. These tests are supposed to give us and our communities peace of mind, but how “peaceful” do we really feel regarding our bodies? As the pandemic appears to be taking the backseat, what happens when our bodies are no longer policed? How do we navigate social reality and its physical implications as we attempt to move forward, albeit with measured caution? The multimedia project I intend to create will explore a subjective uncertainty we have yet to experience: life in the wake of the pandemic’s death. Particularly, I plan to embody “the hypochondriac” that may be very real for those who grapple with potential illness on a daily basis. These health anxieties can be quite debilitating psychologically and physiologically, allowing stress to negatively impact our vitality – the life force that yearns to be uninhibited. This series will combine surrealist and cubist-inspired drawing and painting to illustrate human corporeality as a representation of the intricate abstract functioning of our internal worlds.
Roya Biazar is a Toronto-based multimedia visual artist and musician of Iranian and Indo-Guyanese heritage. Holding a BSc from University of Toronto in Psychology and Cinema Studies and a MFA from Toronto Metropolitan University in Documentary Media, their work uses photography, video, painting and drawing to explore the intersection of artistic practices and cross-cultural psychology. Roya has participated in live painting, created event and tour posters, produced album artwork, sold prints at art shows and performed live music across Toronto and abroad in the U.S. Their most recent exhibition, entitled Granddaughter, was a 6-channel video installation investigating the multifaceted nature of migrant viewpoints from an autoethnographic perspective; exploring the malleability of identity, culture and spirituality by reflecting on personal family histories. Currently, Roya is training with the Toronto Art Therapy Institute to accompany their evolving art practice with a meaningful career in Psychotherapy. Roya is an avid world traveler, listening and learning from the cultures they encounter and finding solace in natural environments among non-human sentient beings.
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