Drawing on persistent cultural images inspired by ballerina tutus, the garb of fairy-tale princesses and Barbie doll couture, Cathy Daley’s work investigates childhood memories of what it means to be female in Western culture and explores cultural representation of the feminine and the body. The drawings mine contemporary vocabularies of glamour, fashion, popular culture, cartoons, street signage, Hollywood cinema, fairy tales, and mythology, to examine the iconography of the feminine as it exists in the cultural imaginary, personal memory, and fantasy.
Cathy Daley has shown in numerous public galleries and museums, artist run centres and commercial galleries including The Power Plant, The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, The Saidye Bronfman Centre, The Southern Alberta Art Gallery and the University of Toronto Art Centre and Mercer Union and Museum Dhondt Dhaenens in Belgium. Most notably, her work is in the collection of The National Gallery of Canada and The Art Gallery of Ontario as well as many other public institutions and private collections. Her work has been written about in numerous publications such as Art in America, BorderCrossings and Canadian Art Magazine. She has received awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council and the Bertolt Brecht Fund of Berlin. She is an Associate Professor at OCAD University.