Underneath It All
Society seems to be in a mode of separatism as it searches for a new identity in this age of globalization. I feel that it is dangerous to divide ourselves into subgroups. Instead, we need to come together on common ground, as humans, and not push ourselves apart by man-created-differences.
Think Creationism vs. Darwinism, black vs. white, citizen vs. immigrant, and gay vs. straight. Many notions are played against each other with the sole purpose of creating tension and this makes no sense. Healthy societies accept the human condition for what it is and value factual information.
I believe that we now face greater challenges since both government and corporate enterprise profile our behaviors and interests. The collected data, reflecting personal choices, puts us in tighter boxes and it isolates us further.
Information is being tailored to fit box-types in order to push product, and agendas to specific audiences, which keeps them in that box. In doing this, a mindset is reinforced instead of opening people to new experiences or the understanding of ideas that challenge a status quo. If people are isolated from each other or forced to compete against each other because of man-created-differences, then we will never attain peaceful societies where human life is respected and individuality celebrated.
Surveys asked people to create an auto-portrait by categorize them self in six words from most too least important. I was asking them to define who they thought they were and in doing so, they became a race, a sex, a religious orientation, a nationality, a sexual orientation, a job description or a social position.
Along with their auto-portrait of six traits, they donated a pair of their underwear. The underwear is being used as a metaphor, like the human being, it appears differently but yet it is the same, Underneath it ALL.
Their six words and an identification number are sandblasted into a glass panel, which covers an oak box housing a person’s underwear.
This piece demonstrates how we have been taught to differentiate or classify ourselves through social conditioning, which I believe creates separatism. It isolates individuals from the established norm al la mode and is used to create hatred.
We must learn to strip away these layers like clothing to revile the naked human spirit or our vulnerability and replace social repression with compassion, which will lead change. If we support basic human rights, we can integrate and embrace diversity instead of fighting it.