Palestrante: Zeesy Powers
Zeesy Powers work explores the unstated rules and narratives on which society is based, and what happens when these are made explicit. She has performed and exhibited her text and image-based work internationally. In 2017 she created “This Could Be You”, an interactive VR program where users inhabit the body of an elderly woman trapped in a blasted landscape raining garbage. Powers regularly works with communities to create collective portraits through pictures and story. She is a recipient of numerous grants for her artistic works, and was a nominee for the 2017 Transitio_MX award and 2015 and 2017 K.M. Hunter Awards. Powers lives and works in Toronto.
Powers’ practice is grounded in communities, and in exploring and questioning the impact of technology on society. Her residency at studio XX in Montreal focused on developing an interactive video installation using the Python programming language, with the resulting piece “An Averaging Mirror” featured at Festival HTMlles in November. As Artist in Residence at the Toronto Public Library for 2015 she produced “Children’s Story”, a complex multimedia projection performance with the children of a diverse urban community. Her 2017 residency at TAIS focused on using free and open-source software in the creation of a virtual reality program that placed the user in the bodies of others. Powers teaches programs for digital publishing, illustration, animation and video through community groups, and facilitates workshops on contributing to Wikipedia at arts institutions, community groups and universities. She is a graduate of the CCA Kitakyushu Research Program (2009, Japan) and OCAD (2007, Toronto). She has twice been Artist in Residence for the Toronto Public Library, producing collective portraits of the community’s children through collabortatively-created animated performances. Through local community groups, she has created two large-scale digital murals in collaboration with social housing communities in Toronto, both completed in 2016.