Protean Frames


Scenes of interactions comprise Protean Frames. Some are private, stolen moments; others are charged, active exchanges. Each image shows two figures together, some revealing moments of harmony, others depicting moments of conflict. However, what may at first glance appear to be documentary shots of two brothers, or two partners, are actually digital montages of multiple self-portraits.


These images stem from my background in psychology, referencing the concepts of personality development and personal identity found in the work of Carl Jung. He states when one facet of a personality is strengthened it is at the expense of its counterpart; as one becomes more masculine one unavoidably becomes less feminine. For Jung the goal of life is to seek a balance between these opposites, thereby simultaneously expressing both sides of one’s personality. This is a feat rarely accomplished.


Though it may not be as finite as Jung portrayed, I think most people feel significant internal conflict: a desire conflicting with a responsibility, an action conflicting with a personal belief, or as Jung described one part of a personality conflicting with another. By transforming internal dialogues into external interactions, my images explore the creation of a personal identity resulting from a tenuous and constantly changing balance between myriad pairs of conflicting forces.


Although I create each image in a way that allows others to see themselves or their own past situations reflected, diverse as those situations may be, the series is very personal; each image develops from my own experiences. For me, the work is a means to make visible the evolution of my identity and internal dialogue as I navigate between multiple, often differing expectations, both from others and from within. In a broader sense, the series urges viewers to consider their own personal identity and its inherent fluctuation as a result of multiple forces specific to each observer, and it encourages them to question how their own internal dialogue manifests itself.