DAWN WOOLLEY

‘…Our home has been nothing but a playroom. I have been your doll wife, just as at home I was Papa’s doll child; and here the children have been my dolls...’ The Doll’s House – Henrik Ibsen

 

This project is driven by a desire to satirise the gender specific nature of children’s toys and the stereotypes they reinforce. The work serves to illustrate the function of gender in day-to-day life, and as a form of learned behaviour that takes place during childhood. The act of playing becomes

a gender performance, little girls pretend to look after the baby as little boys build spaceships

 and fix cars. Self-portraiture serves as a tool that I use to examine my own use of gender. The

 act of becoming the ‘active male subject’ and ‘passive female object’ in each piece subverts

normative gender ideals and demonstrates my capacity to perform multiple gender roles.