nau—sea: artist book

  • Tegan Bowers MacEwan University
  • Emily MacDonald, Co-Presenter MacEwan University


This research project is the creation of an artist book based on collaboration between the primary artists and research into feminist theory and design. Deconstruction is a dominant theme in the project: we used this to break down normative rules of grammar, structure, narrative, and design to express the fragmented personal and political narratives present in the work associated with gender and class. We reflected on the writings of Joshua Gamson and Steven Epstein to incorporate queer theory and deconstructionist theory in our research: “The term queer itself resists a clear and explicit definition, so also queer politics are deconstructionist politics “marked by a resistance to being labeled, a suspicion of constraining sexual categories, and a greater appreciation for the fluidity of sexual expression.” (Epstein, 1996, p. 154)”.“Queer can be anti-assimilationist, provocative and includes various sexual minorities and includes various shades of gender expressions and identities (Epstein, 1996, pp. 152-153; Gamson, 1996, p. 396). Moreover they are intersectional – they not only deal with questions of sexuality and “sex”, it also deals with “race” and “class” as axes of power hierarchies and the fact that we all have multiple belongings within this categories (Gamson, 1996)”. The book is an articulation of our own personal and political narratives. We produced content for one another, in a responsive process of writing and photography between each other for several months. The result of this relationship was a multi-layered narrative: vulnerability, mental health, addiction, violence, loss, anxiety, love, community, self-awareness.

Discipline: Design Studies

Faculty Mentor: Wayne William