Identity Left focuses on my experiences during my first week of university.
The work explores the sensation of changing identity that one undergoes when commencing their education at an institution of higher learning. Identity Left questions the notion that the act of beginning study actually changes one’s identity.
While collage has its roots in Dada, a movement that prizes irrationality and nonsense, this work is carefully considered from both a conceptual and aesthetic standpoint. The subjects head is separated in a pixelated fashion, with the two halves existing at opposite sides of the picture plane. A tension is developed as the two obviously belong together, yet are somehow divided. The eyes of the subject have no idea that the rest of their person is delayed. This is done in parallel to the feeling of sudden advancement during the first week of university, while in actuality there is a sizeable portion of oneself that remains exactly the same. As the viewer though, one is aware of it and wills the two halves to join together.
This work uses a bare minimum of elements as collage can often become overly complicated very quickly. A photo of the subject and a pixellated mask made in Adobe Illustrator combine to form the end product. The pixellated cut out is used to signify advancement, a hallmark of the digital era, but also a nod to how easily data and an idea can be transformed reformed or corrupted in this time. This is analogous to a person’s impressionability during their university experience.