My name is Milly Yates and I am currently a second-year student studying Design and Law at the ANU. I was born in Melbourne in 1999 and grew up in Sydney. For me art has not merely served as tool of self- expression, but a guise under which I have come to interpret the world. Through art, whether it be my own practice or others, I am able to understand things more profoundly as it inspires contemplation and introspection. This is a state of being I struggle to come to in any other way. While I may not have the most experience, be technically trained or be able to list any awards that I have received, I can definitely say that art defines me and I hope that my creations inspire introspection in others. For me Covid-19 was a defining moment in my artist practice- it was during this time that I realised how profoundly art effects my perspective. Isolation gave me a lot of thinking time and often I found myself overwhelmed by my inner thoughts and the pandemic that seemed to be dulling the world around me. Art and my creative expression allowed me to embrace these times of self-reflection in a positive manner and allowed me to overcome emotional challenges that I would not have otherwise been able to deal with.
Humans have an unparalleled ability to adapt. We have an overwhelmingly apparent superpower of metamorphoses that allows us to constantly change and evolve at the hands of any given obstacle. It is this superpower that has allowed humans, individually and as a collective, to overcome the most catastrophic historical events. 2020 has been a year shadowed by a never-ending torrent of crises. Each one, divergent in their nature, dragging the world a little further into an ominous abyss of hopelessness. At every corner, our superpower is tested as another crisis sends the world into an unprecedented upheaval. As the year has progressed, every person has seen a new side of themselves emerge, a new facet evolve as this survival mechanism emerges. It is through this we question who we are in this time. It is this very question that is answered in this work. The work becomes an investigation into the process of self-growth that we have all inherently experienced. It becomes an answer to what has emerged within ourselves during this ruinous time.