This week I have been thinking in the context of my visual practice about the layers within society. At each of our centres there is of course, our inner self and our internal thoughts and feelings, beyond that is our immediate family - whoever we live with - partners, children, parents etc. Beyond that is our family, the community/neighbourhood we live in, our work place/schoool/college, social groups, then our region, our country, our continent, then the planet and beyond. Then of course there is our physical surroundings. It's like we are each a little nucleus in the centre of a many layered cell sending out ripples that effect the layers around us. Some of us are only able to send out little ripples; whilst others send out ripples that reach right to the outside of their cell.
I believe we are also many layered beings. We each have different layers within us that we show at different times. Like different faces or different outfits that we put on.
I have the responsible face, the mother and up until a year or so ago the pre school teacher. I felt like I had grown into that sensible outfit until it became fused with my skin and that was what I was. But beneath that sensible, responsible, mumsy exterior are lots of other layers to my personality that I generally keep hidden and well locked away. The naughty girl, the joker, the lifelong Clash fan, the girl who lived in a hippy commune, the girl who secretly likes to listen to Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin really loudly and jump around the room playing air guitar, the woman who is scared of being hurt.
We all have faces or layers that we present to the world. I don't know why we somehow seem to get saddled with a particular face without really meaning to. Maybe it is societal expectation, the criticism or disapproval of those around us or fear - who knows. Sometimes I look around me on the bus or in the street or cafe and wonder what the secret layers are to the people around me....