Ayden L.M. Grout is an artist, writer and translator working at the intersection of language and image. In addition to her own practice, she is part of the core collaborative team of Odyssey Works, an interdisciplinary performance group that makes durational experiences for an audience of one.
Aliya Bonar is an artist, community organizer and event producer. Using fashion, costume, interview and installation, her work engages individuals in exploring how we present ourselves to the world — and breaking down the divide between Professional and Playful. She has worked with Creative Time, Flux Factory, Elsewhere Collaborative, The Wassaic Project, the Laundromat Project, and the Eileen Fisher Leadership Institute to teach workshops and produce events that engage everyday people in making authentic connections.
The “PowerSuit”—a defining component of Bonar’s body of work—is a personal talisman, relating to the wearer’s body and history. It is what one’s most courageous self wears and while clothed, one can’t help but be powerful. Like a decree from the Wizard of Oz bestowing courage, love, or intelligence, these costumes merely bring out what already exists. Bonar has explored this concept through a series of wearable sculptures, intensive intergenerational workshops, and a series of custom made garments based on personal interviews.