Medium: Bristol Paper, Graphite pencil, Red yarn, Wooden door
Size: 72" x24"
Growing up in a town with few Asians, I felt my Korean identity was questioned and controlled by peers who said I don't "act Asian," questioning my Asian authenticity. They praised and encouraged this part of me, saying I was surprisingly normal and cool. Cool was better than Asian. I hid my "Asianess." I was so insecure about myself that I had to prove to others that I wasn't Asian. I needed to be better than that. I was forced to play a role at school. I was a puppet in Weston society, dancing around my peers' comments, glances, and expectations. I was never myself. The tired, worn girl is a self-portrait, representing the control I could not escape trying to meet impossible social standards. I feel broken down and as a puppet hide uncomfortably behind a false persona. Others may see themselves in the puppet: rumpled, bound by yarn, with arms and legs awkwardly askew. For someone wanting to appear at ease in the social scene, the puppet's discomfort announces this is not reality.