Skip To Content
Photo courtesy of the Ottawa Art Gallery

OAG Collection Story: Cara Tierney representing the OAG’s commitment to accessibility, welcoming all

By Ottawa Art Gallery on February 22, 2022




they, the iconic, larger-than-life installation by Cara Tierney (they/them), is the Ottawa Art Gallery’s latest addition to its permanent collection, acquired at the end of 2021 through public fundraiser—a first for the OAG.

Fabricated by Ornova Studios, they is made from aluminum and diamond-plated aluminum, back-lit by LED lights, and welcomes people every day in OAG’s lobby at 2 Daly Avenue.

Photo courtesy of the Ottawa Art Gallery. Artwork credit: they, 2019, Cara Tierney (fabricated by: Ornova Studios), aluminium, LED lights.

“This one word has been so monumental in its impact for me.”

Tierney is a transdisciplinary artist, Ph.D. candidate, part-time professor, curator and consultant. In 2018, during the construction of the new Gallery, OAG consulted with Tierney on the inclusion of gender-neutral washrooms, to help empower OAG’s vision to be—and to share—the most accessible and informed community space that is welcome to all. In 2019, OAG commissioned Tierney to create they to continue to engage in this ongoing and important journey.

“I thought of quotes, I thought of things I might want to have written on the wall, and then I scaled it back,” says Tierney. “This one word has been so monumental in its impact for me.”

The OAG Collection Story series, produced by the Ottawa Art Gallery and filmographer Chris Snow, features Ottawa-Gatineau artists whose work is in OAG’s permanent collection. Watch Cara Tierney’s story here, subscribe to the OAG on YouTube and find more on the OAG’s new website.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by OAG | GAO (@ottawaartgallery)