Ashleigh Giffen is an emerging young artist connecting her own Indigenous (Oji-Cree and Mexican) and Icelandic roots to her works. Growing up in Squamish BC, Ashleigh focused her time on theatre, music and writing.
Ashleigh recently completed a playwrighting program at the Vancouver Arts Club for aspiring young playwrights. Her self written play, Kamwatan Nipe (Quiet Water), followed a reporter who travels to Saskatchewan Canada, as he interviews an Aboriginal family rattled from the loss of their daughter Kimberly, who was found murdered 18 years back. It is only when her story is finally told, that the spirit of Kimberly herself, comes to the physical world to share her insight.
Following her first short play, Ashleigh was recently commissioned to write a full length companion piece for the Arts Club theatre company. She is hoping to focus the story on circles of women during political stressful times, and the theme of “kitchen talk” within families. She is now in the beginning stages of the first draft.
Ashleigh connects her poetry and other writings to visual art that focuses on the human condition. Her works often are themed with social justice topics such as sex, gender, race and strong political stances. She hopes to raise awareness of issues around these topics with her art.
Ashleigh also writes a monthly column for the local Squamish newspaper, titled; Power to the People, where she chooses topics that need attention, pushing the boundaries in her small town.
She is currently at the University of British Columbia Okanagan for Indigenous Studies and Theatre.
Web and Social Media Links
Quiet Water Arts Club press release
Collaboration Interests & Artist Statement
I am very interested in collaborating with artists from all medias. Art is just as much connection with the world and people as it is release of individuality. As I venture into the next stage of my life, I would love to find others who are on the same “wavelength” and are willing to share work and provide feedback. I have some strong ideas around video art and visual, but if you would like to ask me any questions, explore ideas further, or want to chat to get to know me some more, I would love to hear from you.