Identity

and Human Connection

Rosie Durant

In these works I wanted to dissect identity, what was this unexplainable, unfathomable thing? Was it connected to our gender or sexuality our race or religion or was it as reductive as our appearance. Most importantly who defines it really?

As Defined By Objects




Over the course of a few weeks I asked my friends and family to send me collections of household objects that they felt represented them. I found it was the best way of describing identity - like if you were to be squashed down and bottled up, the silver lining between your skin and everything outside, the things that make your brain hum, the feelings in between feelings.

Rosie – 25

Jake – 25





During the process I found the images revealed so much more than expected, they obviously spoke of the stagnant claustrophobia of lockdown but also the exciting childhood memories of finding and holding something small, all of your own and being able to put it in your pocket, like a secret. On reflection these images then created a revealing and vulnerable portrait of it’s participants.





Of course no one can be reduced to the things they possess but could you get an accurate representation of someone? Or would it only be a version of themselves that they wanted to be seen, and isn't that just what identity is anyway?

Matt – 30

Jaymee – 24

Poppy – 19

Zhen Feng – 19 

Mel – 32

Hughesy – 30

Meg – 44

Kym – 24

Paul – 25

Emma – 24

Edie – 24

Jo – 30

Harri – 17

Our live zoom stories on

Identity

The identity conversation started with an ongoing exercise in which I asked all participants to write three words which they thought ‘identified’ themselves in the chat. 

Followed by a small piece of writing I had written discussing my own identity. We when had Danne share an affirming yet deeply personal poem. Followed by a piece of writing about rediscovering who you thought you were. This then led to a vulnerable yet discerning conversation about the fluctuations of identity and self.  Some of the zoom chat transcript can be found below. 

 

16:56:54 From  Lily Garratt  to  Everyone : 3 Identity words that describe me: unorganised, cat hair, veggie stir frys :0)


16:58:29 From  Zhen Feng Ang  to  Everyone : 3 Identity words that describe me: fate, crazy , mysterious


17:07:46 From  Cas Heath-Faye  to  Everyone : Identity . . . I am


17:11:20 From  Aly Luccari  to  Everyone : 3 words that describe me: curious, introspective, musical


17:12:53 From  Claire Evans  to  Everyone : 3 identity words that describe me: mum, writer, learner


17:17:32 From  Shane Kesby  to  Everyone : I can relate to identity in regards to a relationship that ended a few years back. When we had first met, I was…..me. As time passed I felt my identity was no longer my own, but what was expected of me from conversation, facial expressions, personal history with my parents. A provider, a worker, a father, a teacher and so on. Over time I didn’t notice, but my identity changed, to what I thought I had to be instead of what I was. The relationship ended after 10 yrs and I remember rediscovering myself and seeing the contrast between the identities I had formed. I remember one comment between us that will always stick in my head. What has happened to you, you’ve changed? In my mind I was still a dad and a teacher but I was also what I wanted to be and not what was expected. i don’t remember when I just accepted that I had to be that person, and its strange now that it persisted for so long.


17:17:33 From  Sandy Fischer  to  Everyone : 3 identity words that describe me: writer, perceptive, positive


17:22:24 From  Zhen Feng Ang  to  Everyone : Ah yes Shane the change of identity can sometime throw us into a ‘Advanture’ of identity. I remember how weird it felt when I got to be a teacher right after my secondary graduation.

 

Stories of

Identity

More Art 2

Next Up:

Memory

Memory
Mel Latimer explores the fallibility of memory through layering fantasy with reality
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Identity
Rosie Durant explores identity and human connection
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Places
Zhen Feng Ang explores the human connection to places in his tiny cardboard recreations of the places we've lived in or missed during lockdown
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Grief
Lily Garratt explores grief through her silhouetted figures
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Nature
Poppy O'Brien explores human connection through nature
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