Fourth of five from my senior degree project, survival kits.
Nylon, concrete, steel, leather, acrylic, glass, wood, bronze, brass, nickel.
"Have you ever played dress up? Have you ever stopped?"
Sometime in high school, I wore this dangerously short mini skirt with these sky high block heels that made me feel like a six feet long pair of legs to a church service once or twice. I definitely sensed the eyes of both teenage boys and elderly Korean grandmothers, all probably holding their breath every time I bent over.
These days, I'll often opt for a more subdued, sexless, androgynous look. Sometimes I'll joke that I look like a 12 year old boy.
I'm still experimenting with the way I present, whether it's about evading attention or to command gaze, but it's always with public expectation in mind. As much as I want to dress for only myself, it'll never be true.
When I was working at the wood or metal shops, of course, there are safety rules on what to wear, but I also dressed to look like I belonged there. Maybe there's some internalized sexism involved, but I used flannel, denim, leather, or accessorized PPE to communicate my competency or worthiness whether I was working as a student or a monitor.
RISD Jewelry + Metalsmithing. Senior Degree Project. Spring 2019.