As I continue to think through the metaphor of sculpting identity, the main break down of the metaphor is that a sculpture cannot be involved in the sculpting, but in identity formation, the individual can self-contruct their identity. Identity sculpting will then represent then identity that is socially or relationally constructed. It is a dynamic and living process where the self constructs identity as well as relationships and experiences sculpt identity.
The idea still works in light of how social interaction and relational experiences can form identity. I still love the perspective of Michelangelo in that the form or identity is in the block of stone or marble. The sculptor’s job is to flesh out that from. The identity is in there – inherent in the individual. As an identity sculptor, it is possible to chip away and chisel away at the pieces that are not a part of the block that is not the form in the block.
There definitely is an artistic dimension to identity formation. The researchers understand the theory and prove the theory, but how is it operationalized. Identity sculpting is my attempt to take the theoretical constructs – the Science of Identity and operationalizing the theory to make it practical (sculpting) – the Art of Identity. We can create identity art. It is possible to become an Identity Artists. That is different than an Identity Architect – that is a technologist who is focused on Web 2.0 identity structures.