“Overtouched” was created in acknowledgment of the many years they were taken advantage of by men who felt entitled to their body. The process of creating these images was not planned or posed, both images were the result of Grayson sitting in front of a camera to shoot a different planned project in which the shutter was set to take a photograph every 5 seconds, and the block they had put up to protect them from their pain came crashing down as the camera captured their pure emotional release of everything they had been holding in their body but refusing to feel. It is disgraceful that more and more people can relate to the feeling of their body no longer belonging to them, suffocating them from the inside out. They want to highlight the uncomfortable emotions that are rarely spoken about when addressing people who have gone through the loss of their bodily autonomy.
Grayson believes that the purpose of art and the purpose of their personal work is both self-expression and a tool for introspection. One of the most difficult things that Grayson tackles in their daily life, that they show and incorporate into their work, is dealing with their existence in the world, the part they play, and navigating their life experiences as a non-binary, queer person, who struggles with multiple mental illnesses and physical illnesses.
For Grayson, being too selfless is a daily struggle and their art practice is one way to be selfish, to take up space, and focus on themselves. Their work examines their battle with depression, anxiety, and PTSD, as well as their relationship with their queer body, the body, identity, and inner self-love. They pull inspiration from the occult, the ethereal, the Avant Garde, and the just plain weird. It is a daily exercise of asking themselves difficult personal questions in an attempt to find out their truth.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Grayson is a Community Scholarship Recipient who has been awarded The Friends of Art Purchasing Prize 2022 and The Maria Victoria DeLuca Forsythe Prize in Visual Art 2022.
© Grayson Beaulieu