An Attempt To Level The Playing Field is a social media —in this case, Facebook— informed project. And, a little bit of a departure from my usual artistic exploits.
Background. About once per decade, I attempt one act of self portraiture. It’s a vanity thing, on one hand. On the other, it’s also an act of documentation of my progress, evolution, aging, entropy, condition, as a human and as an artist.
Sliding into the 2015 New Year, I had reached a conclusion about being me at this point in time. What struck me is that the more unfiltered I become, as a person of thought and conscientiousness, the more it seems people want to shut me up, turn me off, tune me out, or annihilate me all together. Especially in social media.
This is not a new realization. People fear (reject, dislike, ignore, fight… etc.) what they don’t understand. And they definitely don’t want a shit disturber or radical (hell not even radical) thinker among their ranks. That is, unless they are cut from the same cloth.
And frankly, Virginia, I really don’t give a damn about fitting in. Thank you very much.
So, I decided to have some fun with the dynamics of this so-called social, self-governing (censored) platform, by having a little fun at my own expense.
What resulted is a word experiment post: “I’m a big goliath and you want to shut me up, or shut me down. In ONE WORD, what do you use, toss at me, to accomplish this?”
There were many contributions and my criteria for using the terms chosen for this piece was, as always with my work, “What does that look like?”
Initially, I wanted this to be a clear case of photo collage, but the original photos (acquired and created) were too disparate to make visual sense. They didn’t fit as a unit. So, as I am want to do, I looked at the key art I created. Photos of me, with my specs filled in, and I had my answer. Flatten all the collected images into color silhouettes.
Once all the terms were set, metaphorically, I numbered them so that the viewer can follow a schematic to see what people would do to conquer me as a “Goliath.”
Short of nuking me and Southern California, the point of the work is not about my doubting me, but rather, no matter what they (have and do) toss at me, I’m not stoppable. I might be a runaway freight train to some, a bull in China shop to others, a freak of nature to my family, but I won’t be stopped. Get over it.
The numbered terms are as follows:
5. Words, Tax, litigation
6. Rocket Grenade
7. Lies, Fraud
12. Whistle blowing
13. Candy Bar