My performances, videos and sculptures create a world populated by masked and costumed casts that re-interpret my own image in the form of popular cultural icons. My characters struggle with each other and the audience through activities that combine violence and overt sexuality with slapstick physical humor. With the help of these characters, I create scenarios that simultaneously exist in the realms of physical comedy and the unknown.
I use a combination of video, performance, sculpture, and photography to realize my concepts, working with whatever modes of expression best fit the situation. Costumes are the steady force behind all of my work. When I create a piece, I first conceive a character and create a costume for that character. Once the costume is complete I am able to take that character into a scenario in which he or she takes on a symbolic meaning that becomes like a kind of vocabulary.
Alison Ward’s practice combines traditional art making with performance projects that reach a diverse range of audiences. In 1997 she created Tex and Trixie’s Vaudeville Show, paving the way for New York’s vaudeville and burlesque scene. In 2001 she helped found The Glamazons, a burlesque troupe challenging the norms of feminine beauty. In 2009 she participated in The Waterpod, a floating eco-habitat that she and two other artists inhabited for five months.Her latest project is The Ruffian Arms, a gender-bending punk performance band. Exhibitions include the Queens Museum, The Dumbo Arts Center, the Bronx Museum, the CCCB Museum in Spain, RAW Space Gallery in Australia and Castlefield Gallery in England. She has done residencies at the LMCC studio program, and Swing Space Program, and has received grants from the Brooklyn Arts Council and the Lewisham Arts council in London. Alison is currently an artist in residence at Flux Factor