Cassils is an artist who uses the physical body as sculptural mass with which to rupture societal norms. Implementing rigorous physical training practices and queering their knowledge of kinesiology and sports science, they formally manipulate the body into shapes that deify expectations. Bashing through the binaries and the notion that in order to be officially transgender you have to have surgery or take hormones, Cassils performs trans not as something about a crossing from one gender to another, but rather as a continual becoming, a process oriented way of being that works in a space of indeterminacy, spasm and slipperiness. Forging a series of powerfully trained bodies for different performative and formal purposes, it is with sweat, blood and sinew that they construct a visual critique and discourse around physical and gender ideologies and histories. Drawing on conceptualism, feminism, body art, gay male aesthetics, and Hollywood cinema, Cassils creates a visual language that is at once emotionally striking and conceptually incisive.
Recent exhibitions include: solos at MU Eindhoven (NL) Trinity Square Video (Toronto) and Ronald Feldman Fine Arts (NYC), screenings at ICA (London), performances at The National Theater Studio (London) and commissions by Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (Pacific Standard Time). Cassils' writings are published in Signs: Journal of Women and Culture in Society and Commerce By Artists. Listed by the Huffington Post as one of 10 Transgender Artists Who Are Changing The Landscape Of Contemporary Art and featured on the covers of multiple journals. Cassils received a MOTHA (Musueme of Transgender Hirstory) award (2013), Visual Artist Fellowship from the Canada Council of the Arts (2012-13), California Community Foundation Grant (2013), Rema Hort Mann Visual Arts Fellowship (2014), the ANTI Festival International Prize for Live Art (2014) and the Creative Capital Grant (2015).