June 30, 2018

How can we ease the pain of gender non-conformity?

Katie Carlisle

My entry expresses my deep pain at a discordance between my body and the gender I should be. I am sharing my disassociation I have with my body, in the intimate moments usually shared only by me, hoping to help myself come to terms with the possibility that I may be transgender, and to (however difficult this may be) discuss the issue of gender non-conformity or gender dysphoria. I want to make people who may not experience this, to have an intimate understanding, perhaps empathetically feel this pain, and to help make the interactions people like myself experience everyday, much easier. In not knowing who I am, or what I am, I am currently living in this space between genders and bodies, which makes simple acts like going to use a public restroom difficult to navigate. I am often greeted with confusion, ridicule or hostility by simply being in this state of gender non-conformity. I am asking viewers of my work to try and understand this difficulty, and perhaps this would create less hostile situations in the future, or for those who share experiences like my own, to feel less isolated and different.

Oil on Board. The image is divided into two boards but is intended to be seen as one image. The size of each board in 122cm x 160cm, and so 244cm x 320cm altogether.

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