Identity Portrait Photography ProjectMe’ and ‘them’: the in-between where ‘my identity’ tends to changeorganically. - Nikki S. Lee Nikki S. Lee, Projects (1997-2001)
Nikki S. Lee — Parts, the men are missing. Lee leans on a man, then cuts him out of the picture.The importance of identity Who am I? I am… I am… I am… I am… Multiple I am… Identities I am…
Painters have explored self portrait throughout the history of art.Self portrait- Vincent VanGough Self portrait – Frida Kahlo
Definition of Identity:“the reflective self-conception or self-image that weeach derive from our family, gender, cultural, ethnic,and individual socialization process” (Ting-Toomey). Nikki S. Lee — Projects: The Seniors Project For this transformation, Lee needed a makeup artist.
Three levels of identity:I. Personal (what makes us unique)II. Relational (our relationships with others)III. Cultural, Communal or Social (large-scale communitiessuch as nationality, ethnicity, gender, religious or politicalaffiliation) Photography by Catherine Opie
Selected Social IdentitiesRacial Identity – a socially constructed idea that stillpersists in the United StatesEthnic Identity – derived from a sense of shared heritage,history, traditions, values, area of origin, and sometimeslanguageGender Identity (different than sexual identity) – how aparticular culture differentiates masculine and femininesocial rolesNational Identity – the nation/country one was born into( or a sense of place)
Ethnic Identity:The Hapa Project, Kip Fulbeck• Fulbeck began the project in 2001, traveling the country photographing over 1200 volunteer subjects who self- identified as Hapa (defined for the project as mixed ethnic heritage with partial roots in Asian and/or Pacific Islander ancestry)
The dark side of identityStereotypes- categorization that mentally organizes yourexperience with, and guides your behavior toward, aparticular group of people.Prejudices – are deeply held negative feelings associateswith a particular group (anger, fear, aversion, anxiety).Racism – an extension of stereotyping and prejudice. Thebelief that one race is inherently superior to another; “geneticendowment.”
Stereotypes - GenderUntitled Film Still #14. 1978.Cindy Sherman plays the role of a young woman studying her own reflection. Thephoto visually portrays a woman assembling her identity, caught in the act ofconstruction…she appears masked through make-up and costume.
Cindy Sherman, Continued…Cindy Sherman. Untitled Film Still #48.1979. Cindy Sherman. Untitled Film Still #43. 1979.
• Clearly displaying the exaggerated manipulation of her body, she describes her face as a blank canvas to be worked on so as to create and unmask the social stereotypes circulated by the media, often revealing their decay and almost horrifying aspects in features verging on the grotesque.
Remember… emotions can be conveyed.Dorothea Lange. (American, 1895-1965). Photo by Tom HoopsMigrant Mother, Nipomo, California. 1936
Let’s look at someone familiar!• What makes President Barack Obama who he is on the inside and the outside?
Identity- President Obama• bi-racial, Hawaii, Kenya, Indonesia• His love of basketball• His hometown of Chicago• Politician• Lawyer• Father, husband• Harvard graduate• President
Identity?1. “Who am I on the inside?2. Who am I on the outside?”3. What do I value?
• Then….how will you represent this through a photograph? 1. Clothing, Props? 2. Environment? 3. People/models?
Student Examples• Identity Portrayed through Photography
For Friday, Oct. 26 th• 1. Brainstorm 5 ideas for this project.• List ways you will “represent” yourself.• Think about the location, people, clothing, backgrounds, etc.• How will your photo be unique?• A new perspective?• 6 photos due on Tuesday, Oct. 30th• Final Photo due Thurs., Nov. 1st