Katie Ott is a furniture maker, artist, and teacher based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Ott
identifies as a queer intersectional feminist who defies the masculine conventions of the
woodworking ‘boys club,’ and the world at large. Her work uses furniture as a vehicle to explore subconscious gender biases still alive and well within the American patriarchal system. Ott’s practice is driven by her own experience as a queer woman navigating the patriarchy, as well as issues faced by the greater LGBTQ+ community. The sculptural forms Ott builds challenge the negative connotations of queerness by using our expectation of the function of furniture as a platform to question the roles that gendering continues to play in our society. She brings struggle to our mundane interaction with furniture in order to initiate discussions about the
serious repercussions caused by systemic gender bias and the degradation of those who
identify as women in our patriarchal society. Ott reclaims “the queer” in her work by challenging gendered assumptions and discovering ways to transform furniture into true conversation pieces that raise awareness of gender bias and women’s and LGBTQ+ rights issues.
Ott received a BFA and BS. Ed in art education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in 2012 and spent several years teaching elementary school in Las Vegas, Nevada. Currently an MFA candidate at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Ott splits time between the rural town of Indiana and the urban center of Pittsburgh. Her work has been shown nationally and frequently appears at regional venues, including a two-person exhibition curated by Hannah Altman at Point Park University in downtown Pittsburgh. Additionally, she was selected by juror Dorothea Rockburne as one of 15 national MFA students to be exhibited at First Street Gallery in New York City.