Identity Unknown, 2015
“Perhaps it's impossible to wear an identity without becoming what you pretend to be.”
― Orson Scott Card, Ender's Game
I struggle with an inner desire to be pretty. I don’t want you to get to know me - I want you to like me based solely on what you see. Fitting into this small box of feminine expectations, I stare out into the crowd and pray those gazing eyes will accept me as what I am portraying myself to be. At the end of the day, I get to wipe my war paint off, staring at my bare-faced reflection in horror as the beauty is washed down the drain. Synthetic and thick, it covers all my insecurities and vulnerabilities. I am a strong, confident female. At least until it all gets washed away.
This series consists of five females turning away, covering, and hiding their faces from our gaze. Ashamed to be seen without their fake identity. We are allowed to see their faces only when it is covered in thick, metallic paint - and even then, who are we looking at? Personal identity is distorted and hidden. Movement juxtaposed with stillness; tension with relief - the girls struggle until they are covered in gold. Once they are able to smear the paint on their bare faces, they are more willing, more relaxed, than with their natural faces being seen.