Vanessa Crosbie Ramsay is a filmmaker, and visual/media artist from Hamilton, Ontario. Her short films have screened at festivals in Canada and the U.S. She attended York University (BFA, Film & Video/English) and Sheridan College (Media Arts), graduating from the York-Sheridan Joint Degree Program in Film and Media Arts. Vanessa was awarded the City of Hamilton Arts Award for Media Arts in 2018.
Vanessa’s work explores women’s identity, female experiences, and diverse representation. She’s interested in the creative process, and the role of artists in movements for progressive change. Highlighting issues of feminism, social equality, intersectionality, and working to amplify marginalized voices are constant themes.
As a professional artist, her practice is multi-disciplinary and includes film and video, storytelling, visual art, installation, sculpture, and community engagement. Vanessa is an Artist-Educator with the Art Gallery of Hamilton’s program AGH In-Class, engaging with elementary and secondary school students to create visual art or short films that touch on an area of their curriculum. She worked for several years with The Royal Conservatory’s Learning Through the Arts program and was Lead Artist in their Design Media Arts program, when it was piloted in Hamilton in 2016. She also works with the Hamilton Conservatory for the Arts in various programs for youth.
Recent solo work includes Between the Lines – a site-specific video/visual art installation based on the words of women writers and authors – exhibited at the Hamilton Public Library in March 2019, and Male-Dominated, a large-scale public art sculpture featured at Supercrawl in 2018 – an annual art and music festival attended by over 200,000 people. The sculpture – created using 9000 feet of hand-knit ethernet cable and oversized knitting needles – was a response to women’s continued under-representation in STEM professions dominated by men. Another recent work, Hot Air, a media-based installation combining video projections, balloons, found audio, and white noise, was exhibited in 2017 at Centre for Print and Media Arts. This project visually represented the ‘hot air’ directed at women in our society through the media. The audio included sound clips of public figures using their platform to disparage women, and news journalists reporting on various ‘women’sissues’.
Vanessa recently served as the Film & Media Arts Writer for the Hamilton Arts Council’s LivingArts Blog. She is also a founding member of the DAV(e) Collective, an interdisciplinary feminist art collective, whose recent projects include a short experimental film (currently in progress), The Mind’s Eye – a collaborative site-specific video installation, and a commissioned community art-making workshop + film project for Hamilton’s Woman Abuse Working Group, a coalition of 20+ agencies working to end violence against women and children.