Thursday, April 16, 2015

Who I Am - Stylized

This series was inspired by some candy bar art pieces that my daughter made for a school project. They now sit proudly on display in my private collection.

The veil that I wear most often in public has been crafted and designed to make me look like a different version of who I really am. However, I am not a particularly adept player on the stage, and have never had the desire to work that hard to pretend to be something that I am not. The version of me that is displayed in public is therefore not some utterly different creation, but a stylized version of the real thing. I don't consciously attempt to portray black when I am really white, sinner when I am really saint, or a river when I am actually dust. I guess that the me that I present to others is like looking at the real me through a thick piece of glass or a reflection of the real thing that I would form in a fun-house mirror.

One of the characteristics that has marked me since I was a child is that I never felt particularly threatened by the effects of peer pressure. While some are moved to talk a certain way or do certain things to gain acceptance from others, I have always felt fully secure to just be me and to do what I was comfortable doing. So, why do I put on a facade that does not reflect the true me? I think the answer lies mainly in protection. I am naturally moved to form into a defensive posture not to gain acceptance, but to keep folks away. Prying eyes and intimacy make me uncomfortable. In some ways the version of me that I project is not meant to be a stylized covering meant to make me stand out as hip or cool, but more to be a camoflage to allow me to melt unnoticed into the background.

The second part of the art project focused on transforming the literal into something stylized. My daughter chose to make her candy bar into something sleek, flashy, and decorated.

(Part 2 of 3)