Spring 2021 Contributing Artist Statements

Keshaun Chow

“I’ve always been a writer in some form and capacity, but it’s only recently that I’ve really committed to “recreational writing”. And it’s only even more recently that I’ve felt empowered to write about my experiences as a woman of colour. Growing up in white-dominated Australia meant that, despite my parents’ best efforts, I grew up feeling more white than Asian. It’s this disparity between the internal and external that I’ve recently wanted to explore in my work. This non-fiction piece is an exploration of the way I (and greater society) have been conditioned to view whiteness as being the ultimate beauty standard. I figure it’s an issue that is uncomfortable for most―certainly it is uncomfortable for me. Writing this piece was very personal and, in many ways, extremely difficult.What I’ve found is that the times when

I’ve felt free to be vulnerable, to use my authentic voice as a woman of colour―these are the times I have produced my strongest work.

I was the 2020 winner of the Perito Prize, a short-story contest centred around diversity, for an allegorical piece of speculative fiction based on my experiences of racism. Since then, I’ve been short-listed and long-listed for various prizes, and been published (or have work forthcoming) in Maudlin House, Okay Donkey Magazine, Rust + Moth, Hobart Pulp, and others. I spend my days chasing around two kids, two cats, and various other animals, and spend my nights tinkering on a novel amongst other writing projects.”