Princess Diana Inspired this Creative Arts Director to Take On a Global Issue
Even though Ally Zlatar was yet to be born at the time Diana, the Princess of Wales, tragically died in an accident at 36, she still draws inspiration from key moments in the late princess’ life.
How Princess Diana Continues to Inspire a New Generation of People
During her lifetime, Diana took on many charitable works, and apart from her highly publicized personal struggles, the late Princess also touched the lives of many people through her foundation.
This inspired 24-year-old University of Southern Queensland research student to take a fresh approach to a global issue.
The Canadian raised Ally, who now currently resides in Glasgow, Scotland, earned praise for using art to depict eating disorders and how that should be addressed as a global issue.
For this, she was recently awarded the Princess Diana Legacy Awards. The Awards are held every second year and honour young people across the world who are bringing exceptional change in their society.
“Being considered worthy as someone following in Princess Diana’s footsteps is such a remarkable achievement,” Ally said.
“She has inspired my work for years and receiving this accolade shows me that I am on the right track and that my work is making a difference.”
Ally’s Doctor of Arts degree is focused on the lived-in experience of eating disorders through contemporary art.
Explaining why she was drawn to take up the challenge of addressing eating disorders, Ally said: “I suffered from anorexia for over ten years, and I felt that my loved ones, treatment teams and mainstream media did not understand the depths of the struggles people with eating disorders and mental health conditions at large, endure.”
“I found my artistic voice was a way to challenge the current perceptions and provide a unique perspective into the grim reality of living in an unwell body, because while the medical field provides a lot of insight into the critical diagnosis of eating disorders, it can neglect human experiences, such as the ‘feeling of being anorexic’,” Ally said.
“My work engages contemporary art’s ability to represent the experiential and emotionally charged facets of artists living with an eating disorder. By using first-hand artistic representations, it provides insights into the subjective emotive and thinking processes that lie beneath the experience of the illness.”
The Princess Diana Legacy Awards “Encourages” Young People to Make an Impact
Ally is proud to have been recognized in the name of the late princess and promised to use that “incredible experience” to continue to use her art to provide a “unique” and in-depth experience about living with eating disorders.
“The royal family truly were so kind and supportive. They were so attentive and passionate about advocacy and wanted to learn more from the work I have done, which felt wonderful,” she added.
Advising her fellow young women in the Arts, Ally encouraged them “not to shy away from being vulnerable and authentic in their art practice.”
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