Alissa McCourt - Artist Statement

My work is an investigation on themes of violence, gender, and trauma with an emphasis on naming the pervasive ways we have culturally made space for sexual violence and the oppressive categorization of bodies. To do this, I utilize sculpture and performance along with theatrical and documentary photography to imagine hybrid boundaries between mythology and personal history.

For the first few days after I made this phallus, it was my albatross. It told me stories of all genres but at its core, this piece is a love story. It is a little tender, a little monstrous, a little dirty, and steeped in drama filled power play.

Girls Like Me is a series of portraits of myself as Joan of Arc, Rapunzel, and the biblical Dinah. The stories of these three women will not be pinned neatly into a singular category but oscillate between the historical and the mythic, insane and wise, asexual and the fetish.

Inspired by the tongueless woman Philomela, this shirt is a vehicle for my own voiceless story. Years ago, when I had no words, my hands incessantly drew this hybrid creature, half frog, and half woman. She is the small survivor that knows to sink to the bottom of the lake when the hurricane comes. She will outlast the storm.

I’ll Grow Back is an optimistic piece. Though decomposing, both metaphorically and literally, the surface is full of new growth. Underneath may be hollow and eaten away, but the skin is becoming something new.

Alissa's Website