Bio

 

Christy E. O’Connor is an American interdisciplinary artist who lives and works in the New York metropolitan area.  She received her BA in visual arts at Ramapo College of New Jersey. She has shown her work in galleries and museums throughout the region and extending out through the U.S., including Ceres Gallery in New York, InLiquid Gallery in Philadelphia, Woman Made Gallery in Chicago, and Water Works Art Museum in Montana.

Prior to her professional art practice, O’Connor was an educator, teaching early childhood and special needs learners. In 2015, O’Connor transitioned her focus towards a full-time arts career. This interest in learning and education has driven her research and the themes she follows in her work.  In 2020 she began experimenting with performance art and wearable sculpture in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and has continued this practice in new directions of exploration and expression.

In addition to her own art practice, O’Connor has acted as an independent curator since 2017 and worked at BSB Gallery in Trenton, NJ from 2018-2020 as a gallery manager and curator. While at BSB Gallery, she coordinated educational programming and events that related to each exhibition she curated. In 2019 she developed and organized a Fiber Arts Festival at Mill Hill Park in Trenton, alongside her colleague Aine Mickey.

Some of O’Connor’s most notable independent curations included Violent Devotion (2021) at Hamilton Street Gallery and Thought & Prayers, Another Round of Vacant Stares (2020) at ChaShaMa Matawan.  In 2020, she also served as a guest juror for Monmouth Museum’s 42nd Annual Juried Exhibition.

To learn more about O’Connor’s curatorial work click on the link below.

Curatorial Work

Awards and Recognitions:

 
  • 2024    Bischoff Inn Micro-Residency (upcoming), Tamaqua, PA
  • 2023    ChaNorth Residency, Pine Plains, NY
  • 2022    Artist in Residency, Elsewhere Studios, Paonia Colorado
  • 2022    Two time recipient Artist in Residency, Eileen Kaminsky Family Foundation MANA                     Contemporary, Jersey City, NJ
  • 2020    Artist in Residency, AlterWork Studio, Long Island City, NY
  • 2017    Artist Professional Development Program, Creative Capital, Artworks, Trenton, NJ

Statement

 

Through a combination of mixed media works and wearable art, I create immersive installations and narrative bodies of work and performance spaces as a vehicle for storytelling.

While my work may speak to broader narratives, a large focus centers on my own journey and experiences as a woman. I continuously search to better understand myself and the lives and motives of other women navigating through patriarchal society. I often wonder whether I would have the same belief systems and morality code if I were brought up with different environmental factors. I question if I would be the same person if I were brought up to believe different values and truths. Would I accept my role as a woman if faced with oppressive confines, living in another time or place? My work explores class and gender, throughout history, and across cultures through the women I study.

I often depict female archetypes inspired by religious mythologies and literature, historical reference points, and contemporary media. The subject matter of my work will often drive the way in which I interpret it. At times my work can be seen as kitschy and satirical, while other times it takes a much darker, more visceral approach.

As I continue to examine the lives and motives of other women, whether fictional or actual, I begin to better understand myself.