Boundaries in human experience
Boundaries, real or perceived, and the related concerns are emerging topics in our contemporary world . Boundaries are almost universally evident: economic, political, gender identify, race and religion.
The theme I’m working on in this Portfolio is related to the idea of boundaries in human experience.
While our gender may begin with the assignment of our sex, researches explain us that it doesn’t end there. A person’s gender is the complex interrelationship between three dimensions.
Body: our body, our experience of our own body, and how others interact with us based on our body.
Identity: our deeply held, internal sense of self as male, female, a blend of both, or neither; who we internally know ourselves to be.
Expression: how we present our gender in the world and how society, culture, community, and family perceive, interact with, and try to shape our gender. Gender expression is also related to gender roles and how society uses those roles to try to enforce conformity to current gender norms.
My portfolio talks about people that are fighting to get out of their own prisons and face personal ghosts to reach a gender identification .
In this cases boundaries define personal space where there are greatest suffering and dismay because the human being is perceived as wrong and as enclosed in a wrong body.
But the attitude toward the world , the capacity to see things not rigidly , the awareness and the ability to transform could lead us into the process of transformation. The life is an open white book that will be written and in difficulties lies opportunities.
Even in the worst conditions , in the darkest moments, let’s remain open to our ability to change . We will see the grace, the medicine for our soul .
“When she transformed into a butterfly, the caterpillars spoke not of her beauty, but of her weirdness. They wanted her to change back into what she always had been. But she had wings.”
“Boundaries in human experience” speaks to us through a process that is not just based on the likelihood of photography. The portfolio is intimate and the subjects are posing.
When I was born my mother
gave me an ancient gift,
the gift of the soothsayer Tiresias:
change sex once in a lifetime.
Already from the first cry was understood
that my growth would have been
a rebel unstuck from the flesh,
a fraternal struggle between spirit
and skin. A annihilation.
So she gave me her clothes,
her shoes, her lipsticks;
she said to me: “Take, my son,
become what you are
if what you are you could not be ».
I became soothsayer, another Tiresias.
I practiced the art of clairvoyance,
I made myself a magician, a witch, a woman
and I surrendered to the whisper of the body
– gave in to the feminine seduction.
It was then that my mother
perpetuated herself in me, she surrendered to me
as daughter of my time,
in which one can live well with covenant
that you wander round, blind
– that is hidden, just like Tiresia,
a mystery that cannot be told.
Poem © Giovanna Cristina Vivinetto
For years I tried to drive you out
from the hidden compartment of my
bones. It would have been to squeeze
you away from the eyes if only I had
found you in time – instead it was
an asking vain without an answer.
It will be that certain things at fifteen
cannot yet be understood
-while you already silently slithered
in uninhabited rooms
uncorrupted by my body.
It will be that the internal voice flourishes
only due to the badly mended tears and patches
-from there the soul expands
But yet buried under piles
of dried leaves there was a clue
– a weak assumption
the refusal of the father, the rejection
of his absence – his chasm,
the preponderance of the
maternal role – the female shadow
too long reflected.
It was in the void that you got jabbed:
by a splinter of wood while
closing the windows
that blow alone in the wind.
You were a compromise to accept,
the internal voice to nourish,
the prayer to be chanted
kneeling, the last ungraceful
patch to mend – on the heart.
Poem © Giovanna Cristina Vivinetto
All images © Monica Gorini
By Monica Gorini