As human beings we often ask questions related to identity, in particular when meeting other people. Who am I? Who do I want to be? How do I view myself? How do I present myself to others?
In the anthology “ The presentation of self in everyday life ", sociologist Erving Goffman describes the phenomena backstage/frontstage. With this theory he shows the meeting between the private and the public spheres and shows how this influences our behavior.
As a participant in a social community one has a social and cultural attachment. Through meeting different people and new situations, our identity is challenged and affected. Identity is the sum of our characteristic thoughts, feelings and behaviour. As humans we have free will and independent thought. It is still possible to go through phases where one loses touch with oneself through meeting others.
During last year’s Base Camp at Tou Scene, the audience was invited to participate in the project I AM by taking a picture of themselves, the way they wanted to be presented.
The pictures give a glimpse into their private sphere. We see the need to create our identity and convey it properly. How do you meet the World (camera)? Do you trust that your identity will be conveyed?
We are surrounded by public arenas where people for years have expressed their thoughts and explained their existence through writing on walls.
The audience is invited to write their thoughts tied to identity:
As a human we want to leave a trace. We have a wish to be seen and to mean something to others. This challenges us and how we view ourselves.