“…I remain myself by being faithfull to my promises” – Gerrit Glas
As a child I imagined I’d become an adventurer, a world traveler. I remember myself as a social and energetic child, always embarking on many things at once. In my twenties, having gone through some tough and turbulent years, I ended up developing social anxiety. By the time of turning thirty I was living with chronic migraines that continue to today.
Through this series of self-portraits I explore how the anxious mind and aching brain have challenged my sense of what and who I have become. These photographs are reactions to pain and painful memories, which are fleeting in time but do not fade without a trace. The traces become incorporated into the many narratives of self and this does not happen without confliction. But while I cannot erase the parts I struggle with, I have become to understand that through acceptance I am more free to choose which of the intersecting layers of identities defines me most. In the images the body is central to the expression of the self. Body is a source of pain I wish I could flee from, but it also supports and enables. It is the witness of changes in the self, but also the root to consistency. I have been lonely, but also learned to love being alone, to love darkness, and I have conquered heights I didn’t know I could.
Identity comes from a latin word idem, or eadem in its feminine form, which means the same. While it is futile to expect no change through our lives, eadem invites to peel the layers in search for the core, for the sense of self that remains the same, brings stability and optimism.