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Hal Wilsdon: I would die for Johnny Knoxville and I would shoot Chris Burden

Student Gallery
Fall 2021 

In her photographic series I would die for Johnny Knoxville and I would shoot Chris Burden, Hal Wilsdon performs physical feats for the camera, from riding a pogo stick blindfolded to releasing a fire extinguisher on her face. With equal parts irreverence and homage, her photographs are inspired by the 1970s performance works of Chris Burden (who famously had himself shot) and the ridiculous stunts performed by actor Johnny Knoxville in his reality TV show Jackass. In this series of self-portraits, Wilsdon questions the gaze with which viewers consume and are fascinated by the physical danger inherent in such acts.

A woman in a jumpsuit sprays themselves in the face with a fire extinguisher. Haley Wilsdon, Self Defence, at the Ryerson Image Centre.
Fig. 1

Hal Wilsdon, Self Defence, 2019, inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist 

A woman stands on stilts wearing boxing gloves. Haley Wilsdon, Stilt Boxing, at the Ryerson Image Centre.
Fig. 2

Hal Wilsdon, Stilt Boxing, 2019, inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist 

A woman with short hair wearing a jumpsuit stands on a skateboard in rollerblades. Haley Wilsdon, Extreme 2, 2019 at the Ryerson Image Centre.
Fig. 3

Hal Wilsdon, Extreme 2, 2019, inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist 

A woman prepares to mount a pogo stick while wearing a blind fold. Haley Wilsdon, Pogo (After Danger Ehren) at the Ryerson Image Centre
Fig. 4

Hal Wilsdon, Pogo (After Danger Ehren), 2019, inkjet print. Courtesy of the artist