I have been thinking about the last post since I posted it yesterday. I thought about it all day yesterday. I am learning and researching in the field of identity formation. I have so much to learn still, but the problem with research and theory is that once you have the theoretical contructs figured out – that’s it. Theory figured out is still theory. I want to grow in my knowledge of theory, but I also want to take the theory and use it – make it practical. Theoreticians are so because they really do not care about using it. They study it and research it and publish it.
The practitioner side of my identity wants to take the theoretical constructs and give it practice application. I want to be able to take the ideas on identity and operationalize it – give it legs and start identity sculptures.
I have been involved in a personal branding exercise to try and figure out my personal brand. I like the idea of sculpting identity. I love the identity formation theories, but I also love the perspective of Michelangelo where the identity of a person is already there – in their core.
Michelangelo’s technique would be to “take away” as opposed to “add on.” The theoretical constructs allow for sculptures to be “added on” too. These would be those socially constructed and relationally constructed identities. This is the development of the pseudo-self. I would propose that it is possible to sculpt or “take away” the pieces from the block to bring to form one’s identity. I’m also not completely opposed to the “adding on” of clay limbs and appendages, but that’s what I’ll try and figure out next.
The metaphor is rich in that there needs to be a sculptor. A sculpture cannot create itself. A designer, a sculptor has to chip away to bring to life the vision – and even more specifically – to bring out the form that is already there.
Identity sculptor – not too crazy about the name, but loving the idea.
In a sense, you have just experienced my identity being more formed – and in this case the “sculptor” was the Getty Villa. Still processing through that experience.