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Ashley Czajkowski

2019 Studio/LAB Artist-In-Residence

The blind woman reconstructing the coyote is called intuition. She feels and smells and hears her way. She sees only with her mind’s eye. She is not lost. Her shadow beckons and she answers the call. She is woken.

Journal entry ~ 6. 27. 17

Bio pic Credit Ryan Parra.jpeg

Photo by Ryan Parra


Understanding the interconnectedness of all living things on our planet is essential as we accept the reality that we are living at a vital precipice in history; a time when our very livelihood as a species requires a massive healing of our relationship to the earth and all its inhabitants. As an individual artist, I feel that the best way to portray these macro connections is through shared personal experiences in micro environments. Specifically using the symbol of the human (and animal) body as microcosmic mirror of our planet, our Mother Earth. 


Considering earth as mother has a history of both enlightened and pointedly problematic reaction. Personally, this association has made me question the very archetype of the Mother and the idea of maternal energy as an embodied, not necessarily biological, experience. As a woman who is not a mother, I’ve recently realized that my practice approaches the maternal in abstract and unexpected ways. I want to delve into this idea of Redefining the Mother Archetype with more intent and focus. 


I am primarily an installation and video artist, however, the video work I create is almost exclusively myself performing for the camera. I want to expand my creative practice to further explore my research through performance art without the mediation of the camera. Through attempts at re-integrating myself with the wilderness and capturing the likes of both my human self and animal counterparts, I will attempt to forge lost connections. In all of my work, I am interested in the possibility of reclaiming our innate animality, of re-wilding the human, of attempts at un-becoming. For this residency I propose to continue exploring these themes to create embodied performances of the dualistic corporeal and spiritual existence of humans as nature.


Bio pic Credit Ella Inderieden.jpg

Photo by Elle Inderieden


Ashley Czajkowski is an image-based artist working in a number of interdisciplinary methods. Driven by personal experience, her research explores social constructions related to gender, mortality and the psychological manifestation of and the human-animal. Though situated in photography, Czajkowski's practice also incorporates performative video, installation, and alternative print processes, pushing the expected boundaries of the photographic art medium.

Czajkowski achieved her Bachelor’s of Fine Art in 2009 from Emporia State University in Kansas, and earned her Master’s of Fine Art in photography in 2015 from Arizona State University. Czajkowski’s work has been exhibited across the United States and internationally. Most recently, her work was shown at the Soho Photo Gallery in New York, The Millepiani Art Space in Rome and the CICA Museum in South Korea. Czajkowski currently resides in Tempe, Arizona and is equally invested in the local Phoenix metro art community. Along with teaching photography and art courses at Arizona State University, Czajkowski works as the sound technician and story editor for the Creative Push Project, as the Curator of Special Projects for Tilt Gallery, and is the former President of Eye Lounge Gallery and Artist Collective in downtown Phoenix. She was the recipient of the inaugural TAFF Award from Phoenix Artlink in 2017, and is the current 2019 [nueBOX] Studio/LAB Artist in Residence.

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