Ashley Nania

BFA, Photography

Artist Statement

This photographic series focuses on the daily challenge’s women face such as the issue of sexual assault, society’s standards for women, and the messy truth of our bodies. On a day-to-day basis I feel as though I am constantly being watched. Every single move I make is somehow portrayed as sexual, even when that is not my intention. I could be wearing hoodie and sweatpants, but I still feel as though I am being “eye raped” by men who gaze upon me. I have internal doubts after viewing the fake, plastic bodies that have taken over my Instagram feed. When I share the story of my sexual assault, I am only seen as “just another statistic.” The mess you left in my underwear should not be another statistic. I have been left with nothing but pain and trauma. My senses are on high-alert when I walk in the dark or even in a well-lit parking lot. I place my keys in-between my fingers and carry mace to feel safe. When I get home, I stare outside my room feeling nothing but blank numbness. I think about the fact that the word “no” was not in your vocabulary. Mama didn’t warn me about the boyfriends who take advantage of their girlfriends. He called it “love,” but when I reflect on it now, it was not love. I sit with this uneasy silence.

Biography

Ashley Nania in was born in 1999 in Rockford, Illinois. In 2021, she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Design and Media Arts with an emphasis in photography from Northern Illinois University. Nania has already been included in the exhibition “Challenging the Stigma” at Northern Illinois University Founders Memorial Library. Nania currently lives and works in Loves Park, Illinois.

He’s Watching, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

A Statistic, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Spiraling Pain, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Her Senses were on High Alert, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

No Way Out, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

Self-Protection, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Past Reflection, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Social Media is Lying to You, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″

The Mess You Left, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Well Lit Doesn’t Mean Shit, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Blank, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

The Word No Wasn’t in Your Vocabulary, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

Cover Up, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

He Calls It Love, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Uneasy Silence, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

Ashley Nania

BFA, Photography

Artist Statement

This photographic series focuses on the daily challenge’s women face such as the issue of sexual assault, society’s standards for women, and the messy truth of our bodies. On a day-to-day basis I feel as though I am constantly being watched. Every single move I make is somehow portrayed as sexual, even when that is not my intention. I could be wearing hoodie and sweatpants, but I still feel as though I am being “eye raped” by men who gaze upon me. I have internal doubts after viewing the fake, plastic bodies that have taken over my Instagram feed. When I share the story of my sexual assault, I am only seen as “just another statistic.” The mess you left in my underwear should not be another statistic. I have been left with nothing but pain and trauma. My senses are on high-alert when I walk in the dark or even in a well-lit parking lot. I place my keys in-between my fingers and carry mace to feel safe. When I get home, I stare outside my room feeling nothing but blank numbness. I think about the fact that the word “no” was not in your vocabulary. Mama didn’t warn me about the boyfriends who take advantage of their girlfriends. He called it “love,” but when I reflect on it now, it was not love. I sit with this uneasy silence.

Biography

Ashley Nania in was born in 1999 in Rockford, Illinois. In 2021, she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Design and Media Arts with an emphasis in photography from Northern Illinois University. Nania has already been included in the exhibition “Challenging the Stigma” at Northern Illinois University Founders Memorial Library. Nania currently lives and works in Loves Park, Illinois.

He’s Watching, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

A Statistic, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Spiraling Pain, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Her Senses were on High Alert, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

No Way Out, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

Self-Protection, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Past Reflection, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Social Media is Lying to You, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″

The Mess You Left, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Well Lit Doesn’t Mean Shit, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Blank, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

The Word No Wasn’t in Your Vocabulary, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

Cover Up, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

He Calls It Love, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 8.25″x5.5″ 

Uneasy Silence, 2021
Archival Pigment Print, 5.5″x8.25″ 

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