Q & A with Dayna Danger

Authored by: WAG Staff on September 29, 2017

MASKS by Dayna Danger

You can explore different themes running throughout INSURGENCE/RESURGENCE, the WAG’s largest-ever exhibition of contemporary Indigenous art which opened September 22. Monthly themes range from technology to storytelling to language and more. This month you can explore gender identity through a variety of INSURGENCE/RESURGENCE events like the conversation below with participating artist Dayna Danger.

WAG: Your work challenges the perceptions of power, representation and sexuality. You work in a variety of mediums: photography, performance, sculpture and video and you are currently working with beaded fetish masks.
You are one of 29 participating artists in INSURGENCE/RESURGENCE. What artwork do you have in the exhibition and why did you agree to include this work?  

Dayna: I wanted to display three beaded fetish masks from my ongoing series MASKS, as a way to challenge our perceptions of “artifacts”. I call these masks, belongings, as they are usually made for the people who wear them. Often when we see objects in a gallery, there is often a disconnection by who made it and who was it for in a historical context. These masks were beaded by Nicole Redstar, Tricia Livingston and myself.
WAG: What role does gender identity play in your work?

Dayna: The future is non-binary. I choose to focus on those most affected by a patriarchal gaze.  We are here to challenge what you perceive as empowerment and objectification. That what you see is not limited by what we can do based on gender.

WAG: What do you want visitors to take home with them?

Dayna: I am hopeful that folks will understand why it’s so important for Indigenous folks to take up space. We are thinking of those to come and what world are we leaving for them to inherit, including our art.

Learn more about Dayna Danger's work and gender identification exploration through a CBC Arts video here

Join us for Dayna Danger's Artist Talk & Demo on October 18, 7pm. Learn more at wag.ca/events

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