Alison S.M. Kobayashi is an award winning artist working in video, performance, installation and drawing. She was born in Mississauga, Canada where she received a BA from the University of Toronto. She now lives in Brooklyn where she is the Director of Special Projects at UnionDocs, a Center for Documentary Art.

In her work, Kobayashi performs a variety of characters that are both studiously and playfully rendered. These personas are inspired by Kobayashi’s extensive collection of lost, discarded and donated objects; ranging from answering machine tapes purchased at a secondhand shop to a love letter left on a sidewalk. Through repeated interaction with the objects (listening, transcribing, re-enactment, play) narratives and imagery begin to manifest and inspire performances, videos, installations and drawings. The results are humorous, low-fi artifacts of an artist embodying the lives of others. Kobayashi’s short videos have been exhibited and screened widely in Canada, the United States and overseas. She was a guest artist at the 2008 Flaherty Film Seminar and her body of work was a Spotlight Presentation at Video Out, Jakarta International Film Festival, Indonesia. In 2012, she was commissioned by Les Subsistances in Lyon, France to produce her first live performance, Defense Mechanism. She is currently developing her second live performance. Johanna Linsley is writing on Kobayashi’s work in relation to eavesdropping in the soon to be published Voice(s): Critical Approaches to Process, Performance and Experience (Routledge).