Collaborations: Finestra Anima (2013)
How do we define identity? Personality? Attraction? We classify people we meet on a small set of fairly universal parameters: age, gender, ethnicity, religious affiliation, origin, etc. Yet true connections come from a deeper almost subliminal level, often obscured by value judgements based on the above mentioned parameters.
This installation inverted the process of discovery of 'strangers' by removing all external references and indicators and only showing larger than life close-up images of eyes of a wide diversity of people.
Each group of eyes is multi-faceted and backlit, confronting participants with multiple giant staring eyes in every direction, day and night.
Art installation at 2013 Burning Man: 4 pieces, 16 pairs of eyes,retro-lit, solar powered, with individual notepads for participants comments and reactions.
Nicolò Sertorio - concept & photography
Diana Martinez - drawings & notebooks
Jean-francois Gauthier & Joe Mayo - engineering & electrical
Selected participants comments:
Can you see yourself in me? Yes. I see myself in your eyes. I see the innocence that is on the verge of being lost. I see the questions, moving. ... Or having my future be one in which it took every ounce of energy and self preservation I could muster to break free from the hurt of religion, child rape and to grow as my own person, no longer shattered, but whole.
What do you believe in? I believe in making it a little better than I found it.
What do we share in common? A hundred thousand words are flowers in the sky. A single mind and body, moonlight on the water. Once the cunning ends and information stops, at that moment there is no place for thought.
Where do you think I come from? We are all the universe experiencing itself. We are within the universe. The universe is within us.
Do I match your expectations? It is hard to have expectations for people. Better to have goals for the type of people you want to be surrounded by. Then you manifest your own destiny.
Would knowing my job change your impression of me? I wanted to be a mortician when I was 15 years old & had a death & dying class in highschool. My brother killed himself a few months after the class & was embalmed on the table I saw on the tour of the funeral home. I am now a psychologist instead. And I bow to your dear heart! Thank you for your work and light in the world.
What do you see in my eyes? Love of a mother who is afraid to have failed.
Why did you choose me? I was looking for someone with an interesting question.
Am I a stranger, or am I a friend? A friend who has had his ups and downs. A friend with very intriguing eyes. A friend none-the-less.
Do I matter to you? En tus ojos estan mis alas, está la orilla donde me ahogo.
Would we be friends? I see your fury, I see your frustration, I see your vision, I see camaraderie, I see blood, I see tears.
Do I look fearful, or do I inspire fear? Neither. You look like you are looking for something that is too close to see.
Do you search for yourself in others? Yes. And I search (and find) all of them in me. That way I release the negative feelings by seeing that anything I react to in them is also in me. Since my right forearm is a part of me and I never get upset with it, then when I realize you are in me as a different perspective, I can’t get upset with you.
Does age really matter? Age only matters if the time and years have not been enjoyed, dreams have not been sought, adventures have not been had, connections not made, and knowledge not sought.
What do you see in me? I see vulnerability, I see change, I see resolution, I see separation, I see truth, I see unraveling what it means to be human.
What do you feel I am thinking? The sudden realization that you don’t even know you... And that no one will ever know everything you thought and felt and did and said. And that even if you could remember, and write it all down, you don’t have the time. And no one would care anyway.
Can you see yourself in me?
Phoenix Lewis (2, male, white, no religion, from USA)
What do you believe in?
Mindy Rodman (56, female, artist, caucasian, no religion, from USA)
What do we share in common?
Robert Adler (male, 66, photographer, caucasian, jewish, from USA)
Where do you think I come from?
Smudge (22, female, massage therapist, latin american, 'ecclectisisisist', from USA)
Do I match your expectations?
Molly Deloria (female, 23, student, white, atheist, from USA)
Would knowing my job change your impression of me?
Mikaela Meredith (female, 26, mortician, agnostic, from USA)
What do you see in my eyes?
Ruby Tuesday (female, 30, server - nursing student - educator, white, agnostic/spiritual, from USA)
Why did you choose me?
Seonok Lee (female, 46, scientist, asian, agnostic, from South Korea)
Am I a stranger, or am I a friend?
Brady Forrest (male, 39, techie, caucasian, atheist, from USA)
Do I matter to you?
Joe Mayo (male, 37, engineer, caucasian, jewishj, from USA)
Would we be friends?
Jean-Francois Gauthier (male, 44, executive gigolo, french canadian, anti-religion, from Canada)
Do I look fearful, or do I inspire fear?
J Michael Tucker (male, 45, photographer, white guy, spiritual beyond, from USA)
Do you search for yourself in others?
Christina Robinson (female, 51, dating relationship advisor, brazilian mutt, catholic, from Brazil)
Does age really matter?
Paul White (male, 59, artist, caucasian, no religion, from USA)
What do you see in me?
Holly Greenberg (female, 42, psychotherapist, american mutt, listening, from USA)
What do you feel I'm thinking?
Ouja (male, 51, engineer, caucasian, quaker, from USA)
Installation close to the (burning) man
Installation from a distance
Installation at night
Installation at night