T. Foley makes interactive installations, videos, performances and public art projects in which emoticons talk to people, blow up dolls drive cars, ventriloquist dummies perform on Chatroulette, and people make and share regionally-based ringtones. Her motion pictures have screened internationally, and she’s been described as a “Jenny Appleseed of media literacy.” Foley works to democratize mass media by encouraging others to express their creativity; she designs and facilitates experiences that empower people to access, analyze and produce media for themselves.
Through her ongoing public art project, Locally Toned, Foley helps the public create originalringtones that are shared free-of-charge via the Web (www.locallytoned.org) and Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS). She’s performed and recorded ringtones with communities in Baltimore, MD; Valencia, Spain; Berlin, Germany; and Pittsburgh, PA (where she lives). Her latest project, Ventwittoquisms, a socially-mediated ventriloquism project, consits of a series of live and recorded performances featuring the artist and a dummy, Hector.
Foley holds a BA in English Literature from Duquesne University, and studied filmmaking, video production, and Balinese painting and woodcarving techniques as an independent student. She has been awarded fellowships from the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and The Pittsburgh Foundation; and artist residencies by new media design firm Deeplocal, Pittsburgh Filmmakers and the Atlantic Center for the Arts.