SGCI 2017 Undergraduate Award Show: Paper Games, Paper Dolls, and Other Paper Play Things

Reception: Friday, April 6, 4 - 6 pm


Location:  Grant Hall Gallery (GRA 123), located on the first level of Archie C. Grant Hall

TEL: 702-895-3893

Exhibition: April 2 - April 12, 2018

Hours: Monday to Friday, 9 am to 5 pm

In her exhibition, “Paper Games, Paper Dolls, and Other Paper Play Things,” Nicole Soley explores the politicization of women’s bodies. Within American culture, control over women’s bodies and, therefore, women’s agency, has been politically debated and legislatively negotiated both historically and today. As witnessed in the most recent presidential election as well as countless legislative decisions regarding women’s access to reproductive care, white male misogyny has largely resurfaced in the current political landscape. “Paper Games, Paper Dolls, and Other Paper Play Things” explores the intersections of political oppression, women’s bodies, and women’s experiences, through screen printed handmade paper “games” and art objects. Soley’s interactive artworks synthesize personal experiences and research, where, through “playing,” viewers interact directly with systemic oppressions. The “paper games, paper dolls and other paper play things” are interactive cultural critiques: reality in the form of a “game.” The interactive nature of these items invites the viewer into violating spaces of power and control. “Viewers” of the artwork become active participants: “dressers” when assembling paper dolls, “builders” or “players” when constructing or arranging paper game pieces, or “representatives” when wearing a handmade button on a shirt. The viewer, while “playing,” is empowered to consider issues of politics and control, and dominance and subservience, that are so often exerted upon the politicized bodies, and experiences of women.


Nicole Soley is an artist residing in River Falls, Wisconsin. Since graduating from Minnesota State University, Mankato with a Bachelors of Science in Art Education in 2017, she has become a cooperative member at Highpoint Center for Printmaking located in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her experiences in art making have illuminated the idea of printmaking as a hub for feminist research and action. In this regard, printmaking is a feminist space in which individuals can confront oppressive ideologies through artwork.

Soley utilizes contemporary and traditional printmaking processes to create three-dimensional artwork and “printstallations.” By creating handmade paper “games” and art objects, she synthesizes lived experience and research. Through “playing,” viewers interact directly with systemic oppressions, creating interactive cultural critiques. Her most recent artwork confronts the disempowerment of women, especially regarding body politics, the most recent presidential election, and the resurgence in pro-life legislation brought forth by the current political administration.