Miriam Foy - BA (Hons) Contemporary Art Practice

Miriam Foy stands by artwork
Miriam’s work is inspired by her experience with autism. She works with performance art and poetry to develop her project. By experimenting with materials and skin-like substances, Miriam explores different methods of drawing text and embeds these into sculpture. This has helped Miriam translate her work from text into an intriguing portfolio of visuals.

Having studied a year of portfolio prep and an HNC in Art and Design at Glasgow Clyde College, Miriam, who is from Renfrew, gained the foundation she needed, to go directly in 2nd year of Contemporary Art Practice. She’s now graduating with a BA (Hons) in Contemporary Art Practice and says she’s found her time at RGU hugely rewarding.

With an interest in neurodiverse art as well as art and activism, Miriam’s final year project looks at the idea of inheritance as autism is hereditary 80% of the time. Miriam herself is autistic and both her mother and grandmother were undiagnosed autistic. She explores how autistic women are pressured to assimilate and to camouflage their autism in society by hiding or masking their condition.

“My work looks at how there’s an expectation on people with invisible disabilities to suffer in silence. I can take things quite literally and tend to participate in black and white thinking. I've enjoyed exploring this in both my performance and visual art, and experimented with durational and endurance performance art, as a way of highlighting the suffering people experience when they mask their autism.

“As I am autistic, I think in pictures, and have made poetic works that I have then created into sculptures. My work literally asks the viewer If they would like to read every word I've ever written and leads them to 100 poems written on ribbon. It gives them the opportunity to do so but it makes it difficult to do so. I take the phrase ‘make a meal of it’ for example and make a meal spelling out a poem of the same title that is inedible due to it being preserved in resin.


“My work reflects how my own assimilation into neurotypical society is an impossible expectation. It is hard for me to exist and thus I have made my work hard to access to the viewer. I hope my work will enable people with invisible disabilities, to feel heard as well as seen.

“I also hope that my work will make people reflect on how different ways of thinking are hugely beneficial and that other people's interpretations of the world around them are just as important.

“I feel there's a real interest in neurodiverse art as well as art and activism. This has really aided me in focusing on making work that engages my audience on the importance of neurodiverse art and its value.

“Neurodiverse people’s brains make more connections than neurotypical peoples, my work is interested in weaving together both words and materials to create a puzzle interested in both overlap and repetition. My work looks at the ways creation can soothe autistic people through repeated process and tactile materials, and I hope that by viewing my project, they will gain a better understanding of the challenges autistic people face in society.”

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